Third-grade students in Deanne Smith’s class (L-R), Hayden, Billie, Ty and Shayne, planted tulip bulbs at the school last fall. This year they are already watching them grow.


Mt. Pleasant kids eagerly

waiting for tulips to bloom

By Linda Petersen

Staff writer

Mar. 8, 2018


MT. PLEASANT—While children the world over watch for signs of spring, the students in Deanne Smith’s Mt. Pleasant Elementary third-grade class are paying more attention than most.

Last October, they, along with students in the school’s other third-grade classes, planted tulips as part of Tulips Journey North, a Thanksgiving Point outreach program.

In October, Tulips Journey North educators visited local schools where they shared a hands-on presentation about observing living and nonliving things with third graders. As part of the class, students constructed ecosystems for meal worms. An element of the hour-long program included planting tulip bulbs.

While all the North Sanpete School District third-grade classes received visits from the program’s educators, some were unable to plant tulip bulbs because they had nowhere to do so. Mt. Pleasant third graders had a place provided.

“We were able to plant tulips thanks to our wonderful teacher assistant, Larry Marshall, who built three big planters out on the rocks in front of the school,” Smith said.

Students recorded on the Thanksgiving Point website their tulip planting in October and track in the spring the growth of their tulips. They can also compare their results with students across the U.S.

Just last week, students observed the first signs of life from the tulips they planted in the fall.

Smith said she and the other teachers hope to soon begin taking the students out weekly to see the tulips’ progress.

They have already recorded their first sighting on the Thanksgiving Point website and have set up a dot to represent the school on a U.S. map posted there.

“The kids absolutely loved the fall program and are really excited to look at the plants as they are growing,” Smith said. “I am hoping their excitement will grow as they see their tulips grow and bloom.”

While Thanksgiving Point educators can only visit a school district once every three years, upon request they will provide teachers with lesson plans, tulip bulbs and other resources so they can offer the program to their students in the off years.

Smith said that is something she’d like to do.

“Our kids loved the program in the fall. If we can offer it to other classes in the off years, then why not share it with those others?” she said.

South Sanpete School District schools were visited by Tulips Journey North educators in 2016.