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Example of a "green wall" - after Bright Agrotech
. Easily incorporated into a classroom given suitable environmental controls.
When planning the introduction of Eduponics into your school you should consider these key factors.
- Production Environment
- Fully or partially dedicated space (in a classroom or other space depending on climate, availability) approximately 3 x 20 feet (60 sqft) or larger depending the scale of the program and number of students entrolled, plus cabinet or closet space for technical supplies plus intermittent table space for harvesting, trimming and packaging.
- Knowledgeable Instructor(s)
- Appointment requires approximately 40 hours of classroom instruction (available from Eduponics in two and ten week formats), plus co-appointment or team teaching with a business management program such as DECA.
- Hydroponic Growing Technology
- Typically a green wall similar those supplied by one or more of our providers. Can also be any of several other growing modalities depending on scale of program and budgetary commitment of school.
- Staff Support
- Through exhaustive research we have found that plants do not go into suspended animation during vacation periods. So at the least some intermittent supervision of the growing environment is needed year-around. This may be provided by custodial staff when school is not in session; during sessions it is typically provided by teachers and students, which requires release time and course credit.
- Technical Consultation
- Of course we and the teacher(s) may not anticipate everything at every school. Our staff is available to help with emerging problems both organizational and agricultural. Most of the time we assist using remote sensing and online consultation via video conference, but on-site visits can also be arranged.
- Produce Outlet
- Produce from the in-school farm is best served fresh, such as in the school cafeteria. This can create secondary learning opportunities in food handling and safety, meal preparation and nutrition studies, perhaps as a complement to traditional home economics courses.
- Science Liaison
- Much of the coursework has ties to subjects like botany, information technology and mathematics. Innovation by local teachers and related professionals are the key here. When shared back to Eduponics, these innovations become part of the shared curriculum, and the innovators share in the credit.
- This is all pretty cool. Done right it can be a magnet to engage students who may not enjoy traditional classroom fare or just want a bit more green in their academic diet or just like beating metaphors to death. Truly sneaky teachers can induce learning surrepticiously; we promise not to tell.