Student Features

Garden Club Member Practices Public Speaking and Writing Poetry

Aug 16, 2021

Trinity Coury, 11, is the youngest member of the Pucketos Garden Club in New Kensington. She attends club meetings with her grandmother where she practices public speaking and learns about garden and plant care. If it weren’t for PA Cyber’s flexible schedule options, she wouldn’t be able to attend the meetings during the day.

Trinity with grandmotherSixth-grader Trinity Coury attends monthly garden club meetings with her grandmother Claudia Hepler.

Trinity began attending the monthly gardening club meetings about four years ago, and she hasn’t missed a single meeting. The Pucketos crew welcomed Trinity as an honorary member. She has gained public speaking experience by reading a poem at each meeting. “Everyone at the garden club is really supportive,” she says. “Sometimes I read from my own poems, and I feel comfortable sharing my own words there.” She has also delivered presentations on herbs, and during one she shared that coriander and cilantro are different parts of the same plant. 

Trinity has also become an assistant to the garden club’s chaplain, Kathy Wescoat, who has been friends with several generations of Trinity’s family going back to her great-grandmother.

Trinity with KathyTrinity with Kathy Wescoat, the garden club’s chaplain

Last year Trinity won the Pucketos Garden Club’s poetry contest for children by writing an original poem about adventures in gardening. She then won the Garden Club Federation of Pennsylvania’s contest for the same poem and eventually the National Garden Clubs’ contest, ultimately winning prizes for local, state, and national competitions.

What’s her favorite flower? “I’ve always loved roses because they are really pretty,” she says.

Succeeding in Cyber School

In Trinity’s first year at PA Cyber, she completed both kindergarden and first grade curriculum in the same year. Today she is in the gifted program and takes several advanced classes for her age. Her mother Abbe says, “We love that she can work at her own pace. You can go at different paces for different subjects and spend more time on ones that you’re interested in.” 

PA Cyber’s flexible schedule has enabled Trinity to enjoy several extracurricular activities, both in and outside of school. Besides garden club, she has been taking dance classes at a studio for about six years. She appreciates PA Cyber’s art club and says her classmates often share positive and helpful feedback. She and her family have visited PA Cyber’s Greensburg regional office countless times for classes on dance, cooking, and sewing. 

PA Cyber has worked well for all three of Abbe’s children. Her daughter Claire graduated last spring after spending 12 years at PA Cyber, and her son Declan anticipates graduating early at age 15. She says that her children have had many more options at PA Cyber than they would have at a public brick-and-mortar school. “Cyber school isn’t for everybody, but the students who it works for, it really works for them. The choice should be there.”

Media Contact

David Atkins / david.atkins@pacyber.org

About PA Cyber

Serving students in kindergarten through 12th grade, the Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School (PA Cyber) is one of the largest, most experienced, and most successful online public schools in the nation. PA Cyber's online learning environments, personalized instruction methods, and choices of curricula connect Pennsylvania students and their families with state-certified and highly-qualified teachers and rich academic content that is aligned to state standards. Founded in 2000, PA Cyber is headquartered in Midland (Beaver County) and maintains a network of support offices throughout the state. As a public school, PA Cyber is open for enrollment by any school-age child residing in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and does not charge tuition to students or families.