Spark-Y School Programs

Hands-on class programming


Before being in a Spark-Y program 41% of students thought they could change the world. After completing a Spark-Y program 94% of students thought they could change the world.

Spark-Y integrates sustainable projects into classrooms, schools, and elective programs providing experiential education for youth throughout the Twin Cities. Our model is to pair hands-on agriculture systems, such as aquaponics, with curriculum focused on sustainability, entrepreneurship, and STEM-based (science, technology, engineering, and math) learning.

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72% of our program participants qualify for free or reduced school lunches.

  • Spark-Y school programs serve elementary, junior, and high school youth.

  • Engagement spans weekly and bi-weekly facilitation to daily elective courses.

  • Programming is facilitated by Spark-Y action educators.

  • Our programs fit the format and goals of each school partner.


2018-2019 School and program partners

Edison High School: 

  • LEEF Biology

  • LEEF Chemistry

  • EASYpro (Edible Agriculture School Yard Professionals)

  • EEA (Edison Entrepreneurship Academy)

  • Global Communities

  • Work Based Learning

  • Waste Management

Roosevelt High School

  • RUF Squad (Roosevelt Urban Farm) Squad

Edison High School
Crossroads Elementary
Community School of Excellence
Northeast Middle School
Columbia Heights
Prairie View Elementary
Pillsbury Elementary
School of Environmental Studies
Southside Family Charter School
Integrated Arts Academy

MN American Indian Center
Columbia Heights Recreation Department

If you are interested in partnering with Spark-Y, please use the School Partnership Request form at the bottom of this page.

I absolutely loved working with all of the education facilitators I had the opportunity to work with and would do so again in a heartbeat.
— Minneapolis teacher / program partner

What's New in School Programs:

from the blog:

Featured School Program: Crossroads Elementary School

Unique to Spark-Y's traditional school programs, is Crossroads Elementary School, where we provide a hands-on immersive science experience for youth in grades 3-5. Spark-Y reinvigorated Crossroad’s iZone (inquiry learning zone) with a large aquaponics system, learning lab, and science-driven learning stations. Students learn science basics, such as question-asking, forming a hypothesis, data collection, and presenting a conclusion. This process encourages youth to build skills in the spirit of play and exploration. At Crossroads, science is a cornerstone of their Montessori-based education and Spark-Y is thrilled to provide hands-on sustainability education to this bright group of young people.

Learn more about Crossroads Elementary, here

Get to Know our EDUCATION Program Director


Cecelia Watkins serves as the Education Director for Spark-Y overseeing the educational programming at each of our partner schools and in the broader community. Her goal is to match Spark-Y programming with what school and community partners want to achieve, ultimately producing empowered students, supported teachers and sustainable campuses.

Interested teachers and school leaders can connect with Cecelia via email at if they'd like to talk about greening their campus, providing youth programming in sustainability and entrepreneurship, or STEM professional development opportunities.

School partnership request form:

Interested in providing your school or organization with sustainable, hands-on education for youth?  
Fill out our partnership request form and we will gladly get in touch with you: