By Kristin Finney
Greene Publishing, Inc.
“Did you ever wonder about the life of a tree; if trees could see; what would it be? The passage of time, our history! A unique tree we especially chose, an oak tree so named for Carolyn Rowe. Now first we had to determine its age, a tree so humongous – how could we gauge? To the computer we went to Google a site, and lo and behold it gave an answer so right. Measure circumference in centimeters 1.5 meters from the ground, circumference we remember is the distance around. With meter sticks and string we headed to that tree, and measured and re-measured not once, twice, but times three. From there we divided that number by 2.5 and discovered the age of that tree – sakes alive! 602 centimeters the circumference of that oak, so 241 years was the age…that’s no joke!” Willa Branham wrote this poem for the Arbor Day project at Madison Academy.
In honor of Arbor Day, the students and staff at Madison Academy decided to determine the age of the oak tree in the front of their school. Arbor Day is nationally celebrated holiday where people are encouraged to plant or care for trees and other plants. The oak in front of the Academy has been dedicated to the past Head-of-School, Mrs. Carolyn Rowe.
The students were taught how to calculate the age of a tree. There were a lot of measurements and calculations that had to be figured out before the students could come up with an exact number. The tree in front of Madison Academy, after many calculations, was found to be around 241 years old.
After determining the trees age, the students researched the history of Florida and some of the historic events that that tree has stood tall during.
In honor of Arbor Day, the students were also asked about their favorite seasons, encouraged to write tree-honoring poems and to draw pictures of trees. Some of the classes also did a project on the life processes of a tree, from the time it is planted, until it is full grown.
To see a video put together by the Madison Academy on the history of Florida and the Carolyn Rowe tree visit www.greenepublishing.com.