The Science of Soil

Colchester High School students in Melanie Laquerre’s health class recently visited Shelburne Farms to engage in hands-on exploration and study of soil.


Students collected, analyzed, and compared soil samples from various locations around the farm, searched for earthworms, and visited with the animals among various other related activities.


Designed for students interested in exploring the various aspects of food, the health course covers an eclectic assortment of subject matters like nutrition and obesity, conventional versus organic agriculture, food miles, sustainability, the treatment of animals in food production, and the global implications of the production and transportation of our food supply. Real-world connections to abstract classroom learning are important because they pique student engagement and attention—thus encouraging out-of-the-box thinking. Field trips often serve to strengthen students’ observational skills and allow them to become more actively engaged in their learning, providing additional sensory activities and expanding their curiosity.


This exploration and discovery speaks directly to some of the Colchester School District Vision and Strategic Plan 2012–2017′s pathways, including Pathway A: High Standards, Expectations, and Individual Engagement for All Learners; Pathway C: Learning Outside Our Four Walls; Pathway E: Parent, Community, and School Partnerships Among Lifelong Learners; and Pathway F: Wellness-Oriented, Balanced, and Healthy Learners.

Please take a moment to check out the classroom blog here for more pictures and information!


For more information, please contact CHS at 264-5700 or e-mail Melanie Laquerre (

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