A good teacher knows that “getting the chance to see, touch and feel the [world] brings learning to a whole other level!” This is the essence that motivated teacher Casey Deaguero from Quincy, Massachusetts to create a project-based learning opportunity for her advanced placement students. Casey shared some of the comments made by these remarkable ten- and eleven-year-olds:
Student: So cool! I thought it was going to be different for some reason. Like a little smaller, thinner and not as sturdy.
Teacher: What do you think tree logging companies do with the bark from trees?
- Throw it away. [This is true, at least for those loggers who don't know to bring it to the Bark House.]
- Put it in forests. Maybe it decomposes. [This is true.] Animals/Insects eat it or use it for shelter. [We'd like to believe that animals and insects will use bark waste for shelter, but bark isn't something that either species will use for food.]
- Sell it to people to make jewelry. [Or Christmas ornaments, or picture frames, or appreciation plaques...]
- Sell it to make wall coverings like this company does. [Ha! We like this kid.]
- I think boats or canoes can be made from tree bark. [This is true.]
- Maybe some type of paper can be made from it. [Has an artist tried adding bark to their papermaking? We've certainly seen flowers in hand-made papers.]
- Chop or shred it but I'm not sure for what. [Mulch or biofuel.]
Teacher: Do you think it is used inside or outside of the house?
- Both!! It could be used for either application. [This kid gets it.]
- I think it would make sense of an outside wall covering but it could create a really neat natural vibe inside the house. [And this one does as well.]
- I bet it holds up good for a material that goes on the outside of a house because if you think about it trees withstand SO much intense weather and they barely weather so this material most likely will hold up the same. [This kid will give Marty a run for his money in ten or fifteen years.]
Teacher: Besides the environmental factors, why would someone want tree bark siding in their home?
- It looks cool! [We agree.]
- It's a natural look. It doesn't look fake at all. You can absolutely tell it is tree bark. [We agree.]
- To feel like you are camping. [Oh, we like this.]
- They don't like flashy colors. [Or they can use bark wall coverings as a great background for their flashy colors.]
- To add some texture to their flat walls. [Something we've been known to say.]
- So that tree bark isn't wasted. [We definitely like this kid. This is one of our driving tenets.]
Thanks, Casey, for taking an extra step in reaching out to develop the minds and support the hearts of our children today.