EarthKind® Commemorates Teacher Appreciation Week with Third Harmony Hero Winner Who’s Elevating Education on Sustainability and Pollinator Protection

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EarthKind® continues to spotlight the nation’s leading Eco-Educators with its Harmony Hero - Year of the Monarch Campaign

EarthKind® spotlights the nation’s leading Eco-Educators with its Harmony Hero - Year of the Monarch Campaign

Teachers are our unsung heroes, and should be appreciated every day. We’re overjoyed to be working with these teachers who, even throughout such a challenging time, are shedding a bright light on young students

Through its Year of the Monarch initiative, leading plant-based pest prevention brand EarthKind® is thrilled to celebrate Teacher Appreciation Week with the announcement of its third Harmony Hero winner, US Agriculture teacher Carley Pavan.

Launched in January 2021, EarthKind’s Year of the Monarch initiative is a collaborative national effort to recognize and support leading environmental teachers across the country, as the brand helps preserve and protect the threatened monarch butterfly population. At the heart of the initiative is the Harmony Hero Award program. Each month, through a rigorous nomination and selection process, EarthKind® recognizes one K-12 teacher who is committed to implementing impactful eco-curriculums focused on getting kids outdoors and connected to nature at an impressionable age.

Pavan, a high school agriculture teacher at Pulaski County High School in Dublin, VA, marks the program’s third winner. The brand was blown away by her efforts in creating a sensory learning, outdoor, ADA-compliant classroom experience for students to help bring back the community’s ecosystem with an emphasis on monarch butterfly protection.

The idea, Pavan describes, was ignited after coming back to school during the COVID-19 pandemic, “When we came back to school, students were feeling burnt out, constantly staring at screens, we weren’t doing a whole lot of hands-on learning which is what we do in the Agricultural department. The Sensory Trail is a handicap accessible trail, which, through educational exhibits, will highlight different species and pollinators found in the trails. It’s meant to serve the purpose of educational for all. That might be someone who has a mobile impairment, a visual impairment or an intellectual impairment” she explains. Pavan’s students even helped design and create an ADA-compliant raised garden bed that a wheelchair can roll right up to, so that the plants are right at the chest level of the student.

“To see this student use the table and witness the joy that came to him when he got to put his hands in dirt was mind-blowing because he’s never had that opportunity before,” adds Pavan.

With over 200 students participating in the program, Pavan’s idea, like the monarch butterflies she strives to protect, has proven to be resilient. To date, they’ve removed invasive plant species, replacing them with native plants, built pollinator and birdhouses, and are working on making the trail fully handicap accessible. In similar nature, Shannyn Dockery, a first-grade teacher from Lansing, IL, became the program’s first Harmony Hero winner back in February, chosen for her EARTH Program that’s focused on teaching elementary school children important skills about gardening and different types of pollutants, run off pesticides, and elements that affect the whole ecosystem.

Following Dockery’s win, March’s Harmony Hero award went to Patti Lawrimore, a high school teacher from Sandy Springs, GA, chosen for her devotion to turning overgrown and underutilized spaces at River International Charter School into outdoor nature education centers and gardens. With a focus on monarch and pollinator protection for kids to engage with nature and the curriculum, Lawrimore exposes her students to the multiple ways urban campuses can reduce their ecological footprint and educates on small native planting, pollinator census, hydroponics and air, water, and soil quality studies. Lawrimore has motivated many students to pursue degrees in agriculture and sustainable business in college.

“Teachers are our unsung heroes. Day after day, they prove that getting kids into nature is the best thing we can do for them and for our own future. Instilling passion about protecting and living in harmony with nature is what EarthKind® is all about, so seeing this flourish under our Year of the Monarch campaign is beyond rewarding,” comments Kari Warberg Block, Author, CEO/Founder of EarthKind®, “Teacher’s should be appreciated not just on a celebratory week, but every day. We’re overjoyed to be working with these teachers who, even throughout such a challenging time, are shedding a bright light on young students.”

Each awarded Harmony Hero will receive complimentary in-service training from an entomologist on Integrated Pest Management (IPM) practices for their school, an eco-driven approach to pest prevention that reduces pesticide-use, along with sustainable product essentials for their outdoor curriculums from leading brands like S’well, Burt’s Bees, Patagonia, and more. At the end of the year, one teacher in the Harmony Hero program will win the grand prize of an all-expense paid trip to Mexico in March 2022 to visit the Kingdom of Monarchs habitat, where they will witness the amazing migration of millions of butterflies.

In addition to its Harmony Hero program, EarthKind® is also partnering with a milkweed seed distributor with hopes to plant thousands of milkweed plants across the US, particularly on and around farms, to counteract the Monarch’s food supply shortage – their biggest conservation threat.

For media inquiries and more information on The Year of The Monarch campaign, please contact Sara White at sara@adinnyc.com or 914.621.1323

To Watch:
EarthKind Harmony Hero Conversations: Year of the Monarch Episode 1 with Court Whelan
EarthKind Harmony Hero Conversations: Year of the Monarch Episode 2 with Shannyn Dockery
EarthKind Harmony Hero Conversations: Year of the Monarch Episode 3 with Patti Lawrimore
EarthKind Harmony Hero Conversations: Year of the Monarch Episode 4 with Carley Pavan

To Nominate a Teacher for the Harmony Hero Award: https://www.earthkind.com/harmony-hero-award/

About EarthKind®
Founded by leading pest prevention expert Kari Warberg Block, EarthKind® is a pioneer in natural prevention for families and households everywhere. EarthKind® is a pest prevention brand that manufactures Naturally Smarter® pest solutions that are guaranteed to keep pests away, without killing or poisoning them. All EarthKind® products are designed by inventive artists, scientists and engineers who care about the earth, made in the USA with 80% of the materials sourced from American farms and the company is providing handicapped individuals with meaningful employment. Kari was awarded the 2019 GMDC Retail Champions of Change award for her role as an inspirational industry retail leader, and was named to the EY Entrepreneurial Winning Woman Class of 2012, 2013 ND SBA Small Business Person of the Year and National Second Runner Up. Her latest product line, Stay Away® was the winner of the 2015 NEXTY People’s Choice Award for Best New Product of the Year. Learn more at https://www.earthkind.com and on social media:

FB: @EarthKindLiving https://www.facebook.com/earthkindliving
IG: @EarthKind.Living https://www.instagram.com/earthkind.living/
Twitter: @EarthKindLiving https://twitter.com/EarthKindLiving
Pinterest: @EarthKindLiving https://www.pinterest.com/EarthKindLiving/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/EarthKindLiving

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Giselle Chollett
ADinfinitum
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