The Power of a Plant - A Teacher's Odyssey to Grow Healthy Minds and Schools

June 16, 2017
Hosted by Jill Buck

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Episode Description

Globally acclaimed teacher Stephen Ritz shows readers how, in one of the nation’s poorest communities, his students thrive in school and in life by growing, cooking, eating, and sharing the bounty of their green classroom. His innovative program began by accident. When a flower broke up a brawl among burly teenagers at a tough South Bronx high school, Stephen saw a teachable moment to connect students with nature. By using plants as an entry point for all learning, he witnessed nothing short of a transformation. Attendance soared from 40 to 93 percent. Disciplinary issues plummeted. In a school with a 17 percent graduation rate and high crime rate, every one of his students finished school and stayed out of jail. More than 50,000 pounds of vegetables later, he has figured out how to bring the magic of gardening into the heart of the school day for students of all ages.Join us as Stephen shares his practical solutions for growing his favorite crop: organically grown citizens.

Go Green Radio

Go Green Radio

Friday at 9 AM Pacific Time on VoiceAmerica Variety Channel

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the world population is expanding at a mind-boggling rate. The world reached 1 billion people in 1800; 2 billion by 1922; and over 6 billion by 2000. It is estimated that the population will swell to over 9 billion by 2050. That means that if the world’s natural resources were evenly distributed, people in 2050 will only have 25% of the resources per capita that people in 1950 had. If we intend to leave our children and grandchildren with the same standard of living we have enjoyed, we must preserve the foundation of that standard of living. Go Green Radio is the beginning of an important new shift in the way we treat our world. This grassroots program promotes the very best character traits in children and adults: caring for yourself and caring for others. Through simple, responsible behavior shifts, together we can protect human health through environmental stewardship. Go Green Radio airs live every Friday at 9 AM Pacific Time on VoiceAmerica Variety.

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Jill Buck

Jill Buck

Upon graduation from the University of Illinois in 1991, Jill Buck was commissioned a Naval Officer. While stationed at the Fleet Training Center, San Diego, she served as the Legal, Physical Security, Administration, and Command Inspection Officer, as well as a Damage Control Instructor. She is an honor graduate of the Military Justice School, and a graduate of the Navy’s small arms weapons course, taught by former Navy Seals. In 2002, Jill wrote the Go Green Initiative, which is now the largest and fastest growing comprehensive environmental education program in the world, operating in 49 U.S. states, Indonesia, Europe, Mexico, and Africa. The program has been endorsed by the National School Boards Association (NSBA), National Recycling Coalition, 8 State PTA’s, California Integrated Waste Management Board, California Resource Recovery Association, and many more. Jill is a featured speaker at public policy, political, environmental, and PTA conventions across the country, and has been featured in such publications as U.S. Mayor, NSBA newsletter, Working Mother Magazine, Women’s Health Magazine, Ebony Magazine, Diablo Magazine’s “Women to Watch”. Jill owns her own business, Buck Consulting (www.jillbuckconsulting.com), which helps businesses “go green”, and is one of the nation’s leading advocates of free market solutions for environmental protection issues. Jill lives in Pleasanton, California with her husband and three children.

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