May 29, 2018 - On May 30, Irán Mederos Vazquez and her fifth-grade class from Sherwood Forest Elementary in Bellevue, Wash., will visit Glendale Country Club for the first-ever First Green field trip – conducted in Spanish.
First Green, an innovative environmental education outreach program using golf courses as environmental learning labs, is offering its most popular learning activities in Spanish. Soils and three different math activities were professionally translated and reviewed by Spanish-speaking golf course superintendents and are now available on www.thefirstgreen.org/curriculum.
Sherwood Forest is one of the Bellevue School District’s dual-language schools, teaching students in both Spanish and English. Toni Marquez, a retired teacher from Puesta del Sol, another of Bellevue’s Spanish immersion schools, will be leading the Soils activity. Maya Stevens, teacher at Bellevue’s Cherry Crest Elementary, will be leading the Math. In the third learning station, students will get to learn how to putt.
“Maya and I are so excited to help bring this hands-on learning to more students. It’s always a challenge to connect in-class learning with the real world. First Green makes that connection,” says Marquez.
The lessons and field trip were made possible by a grant from the United States Golf Association (USGA) as well as additional support from Washington State Golf Association and Golf Course Superintendents Association of America.
“The USGA has supported First Green for a number of years. Golf is a universal sport. As they conduct their first ever field trip in Spanish, this event dovetails with USGA efforts to expand the diversity and inclusion in golf,” says Dr. Kimberly Erusha, managing director of the USGA’s Green Section department. The USGA grants over the years have enabled First Green to develop new materials and programs and expand its reach.
About First Green
- First Green is an innovative environmental education outreach program using golf courses as environmental learning labs – the only program of its kind. First Green has extensive resources for golf course superintendents, including online lesson plans.
- First Green has been providing STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) learning since 1997.
- Golf course superintendents and/or local golf course representatives host students on field trips where they test water quality, collect soil samples, identify plants, design plantings, assist in stream bed restoration and are involved in the ecology and environmental benefits of the golf course. The students are also introduced to many other aspects of golf.
A tax-exempt nonprofit, First Green was founded in the State of Washington in 1997. First Green and Golf Course Superintendents Association of American (GCSAA) have signed a memorandum of understanding that will bring First Green under the umbrella of the GCSAA’s philanthropic organization, the Environmental Institute for Golf (EIFG) on July 31, 2018. For more information and to view introductory First Green videos, visit www.thefirstgreen.org.
About the GCSAA
The Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA) is a leading golf organization in the United States. Its focus is on golf course management, and since 1926 GCSAA has been the top professional association for the men and women who manage golf courses in the U.S. and worldwide. From its headquarters in Lawrence, Kan., the association provides education, information and representation to nearly 18,000 members in more than 78 countries. The association's mission is to serve its members, advance their profession and enhance the enjoyment, growth and vitality of the game of golf. Visit GCSAA at gcsaa.org, or find us on Facebook or Twitter. Visit our industry-leading magazine at GCMonline.com.
The Environmental Institute for Golf is the philanthropic organization of the GCSAA. Its mission is to foster sustainability through research, awareness, education, programs and scholarships for the benefit of golf course management professionals, golf facilities and the game. Visit EIFG at eifg.org, or find us on Facebook or Twitter. For more information, visit www.gcsaa.org.
About the USGA
The USGA celebrates, serves and advances the game of golf. Founded in 1894, we conduct many of golf’s premier professional and amateur championships, including the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open. With The R&A, we govern the sport via a global set of playing, equipment and amateur status rules. Our operating jurisdiction for these governance functions is the United States, its territories and Mexico. The USGA Handicap System is utilized in more than 40 countries and our Course Rating System covers 95 percent of the world’s golf courses, enabling all golfers to play on an equitable basis. The USGA campus in Liberty Corner, New Jersey, is home to the Association’s Research and Test Center, where science and innovation are fueling a healthy and sustainable game for the future. The campus is also home to the USGA Golf Museum, where we honor the game by curating the world’s most comprehensive archive of golf artifacts. To learn more, visit usga.org.