Minisink Valley’s strong middle school science curriculum includes bringing in outside speakers to talk about a variety of topics to support what goes on in the classroom.
In this instance, the recent visitor to Karen Johnson’s seventh-grade life science class was Professor Alan Kulibaba, who teaches turf management at Ulster BOCES. Professor Kulibaba spoke to students about careers in botany and horticulture and a flower’s anatomy.
He reminded students about the field of horticulture, and spoke about different career opportunities in landscape horticulture, floriculture, olericulture (vegetables), pomology (fruit), turf management and academia.
“There’s money to be made in the horticultural industry,” he added. “It’s not just going out with a shovel and wheelbarrow. There are great careers.”
Professor Kulibaba also reviewed with students the different uses of plants tied to food, furniture, paper, clothing, fiber products, medicines and pesticides, oils and perfumes, décor, breathing, soil erosion and even manure.
As part of the visit, students reviewed the parts of a flower and planted marigold seeds with the intent on watching them grow into flowers.
“He gave us a lot of information,” said Anahi Soriano. “And, I felt it was interesting. Plants have a lot of purposes I didn’t realize.”