Pictured is the flagpole garden that students landscaped as part of the “Spruce Up Sugg” project.

LISBON — Kyle Beeton, teacher at P.W. Sugg Middle School, just finished up a service learning project with his sixth-grade students. The project, named “Spruce Up Sugg,” was designed to use math concepts to help provide a springboard for making improvements to the landscaping around the front of the school.

Students worked with Beeton, their math teacher, as well as Michelle Huston, teacher of Jobs for Maine Graduates (JMG), over the course of five weeks. Students measured circumference, area and volume and calculated material costs. The students used materials Assistant Principal Julie Colello acquired through a donation request, as well as a donation from the Stevens’ family. Gretchen Stevens is the P.W. Sugg guidance counselor, Mark Stevens, is director of Lisbon Parks and Recreation, and their daughter, MaKayla, teaches sixth grade with Beeton.

Throughout the project, students learned new math concepts and how they can be used for real world applications, but they learned much more. They learned that getting messy and working in the dirt is fun. They learned how to take a project from concept to completion. They learned they don’t always get everything they ask for, but they can make do with what they have. They learned that people are willing to help those who are willing to put in the hard work. They learned to take pride in their community and that good things don’t need to come from someone else; they can come from their own hard work.

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