Western Hills Teachers shovel up success at the El Paso Zoo!

western hills teacher PHOTO: Western Hills Elementary School teacher Lisa Askenazi makes good on a promise to her students.
– Photo by Leonel Monroy, Jr.

On June 5th, 2008, Western Hills Elementary school teachers rolled up their sleeves and helped El Paso Zoo keepers shovel up a stunt to celebrate student achievement.

At the beginning of the school year, each grade level at Western Hills chose a “stunt” to spur academic achievement in a healthy and positive way. The goal was to become recognized as “Exemplary” by the Texas Educational Agency by the end of the year.

western hills teacher 2 The 2nd grade teachers wanted a stunt that was not only unusual and fun, but educational too. That’s where the El Paso Zoo came in. The teachers want students to see what’s involved in caring for the Zoo’s two Asian elephants, Savannah and Juno, and asked the zoo for help with the incentive for the kids - à la Mike Rowe of Dirty Jobs. The students met their goal – and were very happy to see the payoff.
The students watched as their teachers walked in to the exhibit yard, to shovel elephant poop! Afterwards, students had the opportunity to dissect the poop to see what elephants eat. It was both an educational experience and a lot of fun!