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Lowe’s, Eagle Scouts help with Giving Garden at Mill Creek

A grant from Lowe’s, work by Eagle Scouts and months of planning by teachers has resulted in the “Giving Garden” at Mill Creek Elementary School.
Mill Creek's Giving Garden

Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation awarded $2,900 in a Toolbox for Education grant. Mill Creek used the grant to build their “Giving Garden” to grow pumpkins and other produce to raise funds for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

“Mill Creek is so excited to have this garden available for our students,” principal Melanie Barkley said. “We know it will give students valuable hands-on lessons in many areas of the curriculum.”

This garden connects STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) curriculum for students in various ways, Barkley said. “We plan for all grade levels to work in the garden.”

“This garden would not have been possible without the vision and planning of Cindy Davis, Misty Schikner, the Eagle Scouts and the gracious grant from Lowe’s Home Improvement,” Barkley said. “They have worked countless hours making this vision a reality.”

Using the Lowe’s kit, two Eagle Scout candidates built the garden for their service project. Solomon Ortega, a home-schooled student, built the vegetable beds. Noah Hudson, a freshman at James Clemens High School, built the scarecrows and signage.

“Our garden provides an opportunity to bring science, math, social studies, language and visual arts to life,” counselor Cindy Davis said. “We also hope our students learn to appreciate the wonder and power of nature.”

The Giving Garden can teach students about protecting natural resources. “Studies have shown that children are much more likely to taste a vegetable they have grown,” Davis said.

Mill Creek youngsters can study plant anatomy and botanical life science. “Our young scientists can change variables in the garden, collect data on plant growth and chart their research,” Davis said.

Currently, broccoli, lettuce, spinach, carrots and peas are growing in the Giving Garden. “We’ll plant pumpkins in May and have them ready to sell next October” for St. Jude, Davis said.

Since 2006, Lowe’s Toolbox for Education has donated almost $5 million in grants to K-12 public schools. Parent groups can apply by visiting toolboxforeducation.com.

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