Ontario school soils its undies for soil conservation
July 17, 2017:
Being a Kindergartener is exciting. Every day brings something new to learn and discover. Playing in the dirt doesn't seem like an extraordinary childhood activity, but when the opportunity to bury a pair of undies in your school garden arises, it elevates that youthful enthusiasm and exploration of the inner workings of the world all around us – or in this case, under our feet – to new heights.
Participating in the Soil Conservation Council of Canada's (SCCC) light-hearted Soil Your Undies campaign gave the Kindergarten class at Arklan Community Public School in Lanark County, Ontario an appreciation for everything that dark material beneath us does. During the third week of April, which is National Soil Conservation Week, Canadians coast-to-coast were encouraged to bury a pair of white, cotton briefs to see how healthy their soil is. Eager to participate, it sounds like the Kindergarten class at Arklan School had a lot of fun with it, too, according to their teachers, Tammy Reid and Karen Coleman.
"Participating in the Soil Your Undies campaign was definitely a highlight this year. The students loved making predictions as to what would happen when we dug up the underwear. Some of the students predicted that they'd grow 'underwear flowers.' Some students thought the underwear would still be white, while some students thought they'd be really, really dirty. Other students correctly predicted that there would be holes in the underwear. We were all very surprised to discover that all that was left of the underwear were tiny bits and pieces," Reid says, adding her and her students now know that the soil in their school's front garden is healthy and teeming with life.
Soil feeds us, cleans our air and water, and supports our vibrant and diverse economy. National Soil Conservation Week is an annual opportunity to help us recognize the importance of soil to our nation and shed light on the vast and complicated business of keeping it healthy. But it doesn't stop there. Encouraging Canadians to stop treating soil like dirt is something the SCCC advocates for year round.
This year's Soil Your Undies campaign, in partnership with Stanfield's Canada, will be hard to top. The response to Soil Your Undies was beyond SCCC's expectations. It was picked up by a great deal of media outlets across the country and around the world. Multiple groups and individuals buried their own undies and took to social media to share their experiences. SCCC believes Canadians, and Kindergarten classes alike, are more informed than ever about the importance of our soil and understand the need to conserve it and keep it healthy for the next generation to explore.
Soil Conservation Council of Canada