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IN SESSION: Portsmouth students plant trees to alleviate playground flooding

The students will showcase their work at the Elizabeth River Project’s 2nd Annual Youth Resilience Expo.

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — Tidal flooding is a big issue for much of Hampton Roads and one Portsmouth school is no exception.

When it rains, it floods at the Victory Elementary School playground in Portsmouth. 

“Oftentimes, we can’t take them outside to the playground because there’s so much water out there, so the hope is that these trees we’ve planted, with the roots, will suck up that excess flooding," said third-grade teacher Kalli Crotts. 

Ms. Crotts's third-grade class is learning how to make a positive difference in the world.

The students are giving back to mother nature, and they’re starting in their own schoolyard.

More than 80 third-graders planted trees on the school grounds in November.

“It’s been raining like crazy, so we put the trees out there to soak up the water," said Reginald, a third-grade student at the school. “My tree is 56 inches right now. It started around 40 inches."

Ms. Crotts hopes the trees will improve the playground flooding while giving her class a lesson they’ll take with them forever.

"We want them to be able to grow up and come back and it’s still hanging around to be able to really have that memory of third grade and how awesome it was for them," Crotts said.

The Victory students will showcase their work at the Elizabeth River Project’s 2nd Annual Youth Resilience Expo on Saturday, Feb. 29 at the Norfolk Botanical Garden.

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