Water Quality Monitoring at the Land Campus

Twice a year, the students meet with our Stream Team Volunteer Bob Virag to monitor a section of the Bonhomme Creek which is located on the CMS Land Campus. We run multiple tests on the creek in order to determine the quality of the water. Today, our creek received a good score. Two thumbs up. We were down a few crane fly larvae and leeches but overall, the creek is healthy and flowing with life. Bob even said our creek “is one of the nicest creeks in the county. It’s like being in the Ozarks.” Thanks, Bob! We love working with you to improve the quality of our Missouri waters!

Best in Show!

Congratulations to Kaylee for receiving Best in Show at the CMS Iris Show! And Thank you to Erin Chien and Jean Morris who led the design workshop for our students and coordinated the show. This year was our largest group of student participants and many families and community members joined us. Here are a few photos from the event:

 

 

 

Hello, May!

The AP is ending the school year strong. We are busy with events, assignments, trimester projects, and micro-economy sales. Last week, the students hosted the 6th annual CMS Talent Show. What a success! What a talented bunch of kids! Thank you to all who participated and came to this special evening at CMS.
This week the students crafted windchimes and tables for their final Market Day. The AP finance manager reported a record year in sales for the AP INC., and returning students have already begun brainstorming ideas for next year’s products. We all agree the Land Campus has been our number 1 resource for crafting beautifully handmade products.
The class also participated in a Middle School United Nations General Assembly this week, along with students from Crossroads College Prep and Wydown Middle. The following issues were discussed: slavery in Mauritania, drug addiction in Honduras, Russian aggression in Ukraine, Uighur violence in China, and sustainable development in Africa. The group did an excellent job of participating and responding to resolutions. Way to represent! 
Next week the class will host the Annual CMS Iris Show to be held in the CMS gym on Wednesday, May 8 from noon to 3:00 pm. This year’s theme is Elemental Irises (Fire, Water, Earth, Air). The Artistic Design class will be on Tuesday, May 7 at 12:30 PM.
We will also be planting 1,200 plants as part of our habitat restoration project next week! More photos to come! We will keep you posted along the way. Have a great weekend.

Happy Busy Bees

The AP bee colony is happy, healthy, and buzzing with activity. The queen is thriving, fat, and happy. She has been working her way through the hive, laying eggs in every frame that is not occupied by pollen, brood, honey, or nectar. The students met with their bee mentor yesterday to check on the hive. On each frame, there are about 2,000 bees! Good news, considering the colony spent a good part of the fall recovering from the loss of their queen. Next week, we will check for swarm cells, look for the presence of Varroa destructor mites and begin planning for a second hive. It’s still a little early to say that we will have an excess of honey this fall, but it sure is reassuring to see such abundance before the nectar flow in a few weeks.

 

 

Springing into Spring with Spring Peepers!

Today, the Adolescents went on another trip to the Land. We scouted the pond areas for frogs and other amphibians. We found many cricket frogs and spring peepers. This is a good sign because those species are native to Missouri. After a successful collection of frogs and data, we split into two teams. One team searched the forest for invasive honeysuckle sprouts and the other team helped Mr. Mike cut down the tall pampas grasses. Later this spring, we plan to replace the non-native pampas grasses with native switchgrass.

By Anna Matthys-Pearce

Ode to Bush-Honeysuckle

Honeysuckles must die, they are meanies,

They kill the earth and other native plants,

We must squish them into small paninis,

Chopping them all down, A wish I can’t grant,

They block sunlight, and invade big forests,

Leaf-growth is earlier for them to grow,

Nothing eats them, not even a tortoise

Growing everywhere, It’s too big to mow

It’s a lonicera that kills all plants

It grows too quickly, it is hard to tame,

This could be a 45-minute rant

Caprifoliaceae, is its family name.

Outcompeting plants like Blue False Indigo

We have a honeysuckle overflow

-Kaylee