We are writing to encourage eighth-grade students to register for the innovative academic SEE Team program at Riverside-Brookfield High School for their freshman year.

The School of Environmental Education (SEE Team) is a school within a school comprised of an interdisciplinary team of teachers and freshmen students working in concert with the Brookfield Zoo and other community resources. The SEE Team allows students the opportunity to achieve academic credit and meet state standards in the areas of algebra, biology, English and wellness while focusing on local environmental issues and environmental literacy.

We encourage freshman to take part in this program that is unique to RBHS. As the team works in partnership with the Brookfield Zoo, the students are provided with an opportunity to immerse themselves in a world-class zoo and to learn from its scientists.

This is chance that generally only college zoology majors and the like would get to experience. It is a tremendous program that speaks to students of all academic levels and learning styles.

Students in this program find an enthusiasm and ownership in their learning that is contagious. My son and his classmates came away from the program having a very strong feeling of accomplishment due to all of the projects they participated in that helped the environment and others.

This sense of accomplishment was further achieved by the fact that they design and carry out their own projects. This challenged them to use problem-solving skills and new methods to solve an actual need that they saw and wanted to fulfill.

The multi-disciplinary approach helps the students visualize how their learning applies in very specific ways. They learn real-world issues that apply today and the adult community they are entering into will be dealing with.

It is real-world knowledge that applies to real world jobs. They have great exposure to the various fields and job opportunities that are continuously being created in the rapidly growing green movement.

The hands-on work with scientists, naturalists and professionals, as well the trips and work days provide further examples of how their classroom learning applies to the real world and ties them to their community.

The critical thinking and creative applications developed in this program are very unique. The team approach bonds the students in a very positive way and is a wonderful bridge into high school life. We urge all incoming freshman to join the team.

Dawn Gmitro and Mike Gmitro
Dawn Gmitro is an RBHS parent. Mike Gmitro is an RBHS student.