OPEI announces TurfMutt contest winner

Updated Feb 19, 2013

The Outdoor Power Equipment Institute Education and Research Foundation and Discovery Education awarded Deborah Icard’s fourth grade class at Cloverleaf Elementary School in Statesville, North Carolina, with the grand prize from the TurfMutt “Landscapes Across America.”

The national contest challenged third to fifth grade students with showcasing their school’s unique local landscape and the environmental aspects of their region that need to be protected.

Icard’s class was chosen based on their presentation on how they would solve erosion and topsoil issues, attract wildlife, lower air pollution and make their school grounds more sustainable. The class presentation included solutions such as planting more trees and plants, supplementing the soil with organic matter and adding additional grass and groundcovers to school property.

As the grand prize winner, the class will receive a $5,000 grant to implement an eco-friendly classroom program at their school, a $500 teacher award and trees to be planted around the United States in honor of each member of the class.

Second place winners will receive a $500 grant for the teacher to implement an eco-friendly classroom program at their school and trees to be planted in the U.S. in honor of each member of the class.

Second place winners:

Wendy Palese, Elmwood Elementary School, Mechanicsburg Area School District, Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania

Christine Tang, Eastover Elementary School, Bloomfield Hills School District, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan

Mary Beisert, West End Elementary School, Bellville Independent School District, Industry, Texas

Ellen Raieta, Marshall Street Elementary School, Norristown Area School District, Norristown, Pennsylvania

The “Landscapes Across America” contest is part of the TurfMutt educational outreach program, a new science-based curriculum for elementary students to learn the science behind plants’ ability to absorb carbon dioxide, release oxygen, cool the air, control dust, reduce erosion and filter water. TurfMutt, based on a real rescue dog named Lucky, is the engaging character that talks to students about the importance of green spaces, growing lawns and landscapes in the best manner and how to care for them responsibly.

For more detail on the contest and winning entries, visit turfmutt.discoveryeducation.com.

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