Local elementary school wins prize money and places in National Competition

Community News

HARRIS COUNTY, Ga. (WRBL) – New Mountain Hill Elementary School in Harris County was named a specialty winner in the STEM category of the Evergreen Packaging and Kidsgardening Carton 2 Garden Contest.

The three month long schoolwide project involved giving every grade level a different job. Students collected and cleaned over 600 milk cartons for the project.

Students were also responsible for designing, engineering, measuring, estimating costs for supplies and building the entire project.

New Mountain Hill Elementary School’s Media Specialist, Mary Thompson says taking the project and incorporating the schools focus on agriculture and pollinators was one of her favorite parts.

“We didn’t want something that we were just going to do just for this project and then be done with it. We really wanted something that was going to be able to stay that we could use every year,” said Thompson. “Like I said, overarching theme of pollinators and agriculture, we wanted to make sure that all of that stayed, you know, with our project.”

The students won a $1,500 cash prize along with a few other prizes, which will be put towards supplies for the garden.

The project was completely student built and designed all the way down to what color and kind of flowers they wanted to plant. New Mountain Hill 3rd grader, Alaina Thompson, says watching the students come together and create this project was her favorite part.

“I felt pretty proud of all of us and how we made it work,” said Thompson. “How it’s going to stay outside for a very long time and how we sculptured it.”

The project was completed and submitted to the competition in March of 2020, right before students were sent home because of the pandemic. Despite not being physically at school to watch the garden grow, Thompson kept students involved by posting pictures and updates for them to view at home.

New Mountain Hill Media Clerk, Joy Wallace, worked alongside Thompson to help students bring this award winning project to life.

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