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And fifth-graders in a Chesapeake Bay Club seminar class made concrete reef balls for use in the bay as oyster habitats. For those efforts, Hammond was one of 10 schools statewide in 2005 - and the only one in Howard County - recognized as a "Green School" by the Maryland Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education, a consortium of educators, nonprofit groups and state agencies. "It has opened the eyes of a lot of kids to things that they thought they didn't have control over," said Sally Oswald, a gifted-and-talented resource teacher at Hammond and Bollman Bridge elementary schools. "Some kids have said to me, 'What can we do? We're just kids.'" For three years, Oswald has taught the Chesapeake Bay Club class, which is open to any fifth-grader interested in the environment. With each year, interest in environmental projects has grown, drawing the involvement of various grades and the community, Oswald said. The "Green School" award recognizes schools that demonstrate a holistic approach to environmental education, said Carol Towle, executive director of the association.


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