P15419: Rochester Roots Experimental Horticulture Lab


Project Summary Project Information

Rochester Roots is a non-profit program with a focus on increasing the sustainability and fairness of the food system. The primary goal of the Rochester Roots program is teaching how people, technology and plants interact by creating city schoolyard gardens that allow students to come together and learn about agriculture.

Rochester Roots has been given a classroom at the Montessori Academy School #53. One of the many things they wish to do with the room is to start seeds in the late winter and early spring for later planting outdoors in the garden. This seed starter lab is also intended to provide the students at the Montessori Academy School #53 with hands on experience, allowing them to see and interact with the growing process on a daily basis. The idea of the lab is that through experimentation, the students will be able to see how plants react to different environmental conditions and find out which conditions are best for each of the plants. Incorporation of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Math) learning into the lab module also assists teachers when trying to teach the students the new Common Core curriculum.

The goal of this project is to create a small indoor seed starting lab that can be controlled and monitored by a team of 3rd-6th grade students. Each team will experiment with specific growing conditions for light, water, soil & temperature. Students will record data for the growth of their plant as well as their conditions and compare these results to other teams’.

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Project Name
Rochester Roots Experimental Horticulture Lab
Project Number
Project Family
Sustainable Systems
Start Term
End Term
Faculty Guide
Art North, artnorth@rpa.net
Primary Customer
Jan McDonald Rochester Roots, jan@rochesterroots.org

Team Members

Name Role Contact
McKenzie Worden Project Lead - Industrial & Systems Engineer mrw2815@rit.edu
James Forbes Lead Engineer - Mechanical Engineer jmf6999@rit.edu
Benjamin Kerlin Mechanical Engineer bmk6256@rit.edu
Lawrence Osai Electrical Engineer llo9663@rit.edu
Ryan Cody Electrical Engineer rtc3478@rit.edu

Table of Contents


Photo Gallery

Planning & Execution

Gate Reviews

Problem Definition

Systems Design

Detailed Design

Build, Test, Document

Publications & Presentations


Planning & Execution | Problem Definition | Systems Design | Detailed Design | Build, Test, Document | Publications & Presentations | Photo Gallery