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Christina Scripps, Discovery Education

Emily Stubbs, Foundation Communications

– New, Online Destination “From the Ground Up: The Science of Soil” Launches with Dynamic Lesson Plans and Activities, Interactive Tools, and Agricultural Career Profiles –

SILVER SPRING, Md. (April 4, 2014)The Nutrients for Life Foundation and Discovery Education announced today at the National Science Teachers Association’s annual conference the launch of a new online destination, “From the Ground Up: The Science of Soil,” designed to give middle school students a deeper understanding of the importance of soil science and nutrients in agriculture.

Designed as a multi-year engagement program for middle school students, From the Ground Up: The Science of Soil utilizes a wide-range of innovative strategies to highlight the importance of soil, its nutrients and the science behind creating sustainable, global agricultural practices.

The new, online destination features a powerful combination of digital resources including:

  • Dynamic lesson plans: The site’s lesson plans, with accompanying video segments, are designed to engage varied learners, enhance digital literacy, and increase overall retention of core concepts by bringing science to life. Lessons cover a wide-breadth of material ranging from the meaning of essential soil nutrients to the challenges that must be met in order to feed the world’s population in 2050.
  • Interactive Tools:  “Exploring Plant Nutrients” allows students to gain a deeper understanding of the role of different plant nutrients by determining the right mix of water, air, and fertilizer needed to nurse a plant back to health.
  • Bilingual family activities: Designed to provide parents with hands-on opportunities to help their children understand the importance of soil, the site’s family activities, available in both English and Spanish, range from family farm trips to tips for growing a garden. Each activity ensures that children recognize soil as a provider of proper nutrition and sustenance for plants, animals and humans alike.
  • Agricultural career profiles: The site’s in-depth career profiles give students a first-hand look at the breakthrough technologies and exciting science involved in careers in agriculture. From Precision Agriculture Specialists to Technical Support Division Managers, students are able to get an inside look at agriculture at work in the ever-changing and rapidly growing world of the 21st century. 

“Soil is one of our world’s greatest natural resources and provides the platform for farmers and gardeners to grow our food,” said Nutrients for Life Foundation Executive Director Harriet Wegmeyer. “We are excited to share these science-based digital resources about soil and fertilizers through our partnership with Discovery Education. For everyone who has ever been curious about the complex world of soil nutrients, this program is for you!”

“As an educator, I’m thrilled to be able to use this resource as a way to give my students an in-depth look at soil – something that will forever be fundamentally important not only to science, but also to nutrients and life,” said Ann LaBrode, 8th Grade Science Teacher, Hopedale Jr/Sr High School. “Cutting-edge digital resources like those provided as part of this site make science relevant and exciting for my students.”

From the Ground Up: The Science of Soil, the Nutrients for Life Foundation’s first partnership with a global education company, is part of the foundation’s continued dedication to informing the public of the role of nutrients in both the production of nutritious abundant food and the preservation of healthy green spaces.

To learn more about the new program or to access the free resources, please visit:

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content and professional development for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content that supports the implementation of Common Core, professional development, assessment tools, and the largest professional learning community of its kind.  Available in over half of all U.S. schools, community colleges and in 50 countries around the world, Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that accelerate academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at

About Nutrients for Life 
The Nutrients for Life Foundation spearheads the mission to educate students and the public about critical soil nutrients in our growing world.  Since formation ten years ago, the Foundation has reached over 6 million students with resources such as “Nourishing the Planet in the 21st Century,” the Smithsonian approved, STEM curriculum.  Nutrients for Life’s 2013 partnership with Discovery Education has added a new dimension of innovative, interactive digital resources for the modern classroom.  The Nutrients for Life Foundation is a tax-exempt status organization described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.