Northstar Academy students turn schoolyard into a native species garden

While most kids’ summers are filled with riding bikes and playing on the beach, some North Star Academy students are doing something else to keep busy.

For three years Michele Talsma has been trying to get this piece of eroded land on her school’s property turned into something she and her students can be proud of and finally a teachers, assignment is complete as he turns schoolyard into a native species garden.

“The best part about being here today is to see the students working out here, to see their interest level, they are working very hard,” said Michele Talsma, Teacher, North Star Academy.

“This class is really fun, what we are doing here is going to help out the environment and helping our knowledge,” said Silvia Barry, Student, North Star Academy.

The students grew their own native species and with some grant money, help from an NMU professor and ecologists from the Hiawatha National Forest, this team gets all A’s for effort.

“School is out for the semester, so all of the students participating in this term project program are doing so voluntarily,” reports Danielle Davis.

Students are planting a variety of native species including wetland species, black-eyed susans and even some flowering plants.

“It gives them a great stewardship project to because for many, many years they will be able to drive by and say when I was in the eighth grade I contributed to that,” said, Deb Le Blanc, ecologist, Hiawatha National Forest.

“I like that everybody can come together and work as a team My other favorite part is making this space a better for the environment,” said Seth Coburn, Student, Northstar Academy.

“Just doing something better for the environment, turning this ditch into something into something that is going to be beautiful later on,” said Tristan Teeple, Student, Northstar Academy.

The term project program continues til the end of the month.