The greenhouses at Apollo and Daviess County high schools are filled with plants, flowers and vegetables that were grown and nurtured by students since January. But when the students return from spring break, all of their hard work will be on display when they open up the greenhouses to the public for their annual sale. Matt Johnson, ag teacher at Apollo, and Chad Askins, ag teacher at DCHS, have been working with the students through the growing process while allowing them to get all of the hands-on experience possible.
Askins said he teaches the students the formula for photosynthesis and the transpiration rates in plants, which is the process that involves loss of water vapor through the stomata of plants. But it’s seeing those lessons firsthand that provides real-world application to what they’re being taught that makes the greenhouse project special, Askins added.
“I don’t have any horticulture or greenhouse classes until the second semester; so as soon as they get here in January, we start seeding and transplanting,” Askins said. “They do every bit of it, and that’s what is really awesome about the class.” For Johnson, it’s showing the students not only how to grow the plants but also the business side.
Part of the curriculum is learning customer service, which is being knowledgeable about what they’re selling, helping customers pick out and carry out what they buy and running a cash register. “They learn the industry from top to bottom — from seed to sale,” Johnson said. Apollo’s main seller is the hanging baskets with a mix of ornamental flowers. But it also sells geraniums to ferns.
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