Professional gardeners may be weeding and trimming, but 15 feet below them on a river bank, kids reforesting their local creek are busy planting and restoring.
A group of Rattlesnake Elementary students, all boys, have been studying all year how to restore their school’s namesake creek. The students in Suzy Archibald-Wilson’s class at Rattlesnake spent afternoons last fall pulling weeds between the creek and a popular pathway.
“They’re learning stewardship of the land,” Archibald-Wilson said. “It just makes me so proud to see them out here doing it.”
Clark Fork Coalition outreach coordinator Ellie Rial instructed the students. “This could use a bit more soil,” she said to the fifth grade boys gathered around a foot deep hole. “They need to be covered over their roots so they have a fighting chance.”
“We’re gonna need some more dirt,” Jackson Pelger called to the crew of boys, while scraping the remains of his digging into the hole.
“Maybe we should take some from our ‘abandon ship’ one,” Taylor Thomas replied, referring to a nearby excavation that produced more rocks than dirt.