California Educator

August / September 2018

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 59 of 71

A G A R D E N O N school grounds can provide abundant lessons for students, and the beginning of the school year is the time for them to start thinking about building and planting one. S e v e r a l y e a r s b a c k , A n n a C a s h's fourth-graders at Harrington Elementary School in Oxnard annually planted seeds, turned over soil , and prepped garden beds for bountiful harvests of vegetables, herbs and flowers. Cash, a member of the Oxnard Edu- c a t o r s A ss o c i a t i o n , s ay s e a c h ye a r 's c r o p of e a g e r ga rd e n e r s p o s e d su c h qu e stions as " How d e e p do we pl ant t h i s s e e d l i n g ? " a n d " W h e n w i l l w e start pulling up the lettuce?" The ques- tions and answers help deepen student learning and experiences. " With school gardens, we have the o pp or tu nity to t e a ch a ra n ge of l e s- sons and subjects," says Cash , now a Growing Minds School gardens yield infinite benefits first-grade teacher. "Students use math, science and biology to measure and track their seedlings. They use language arts to document their work, make obser - vations, and even create presentations for the community, and use art skills to illustrate reports about their crops." Community involvement S e ed lin gs for Harrin g ton's garden were courtesy of Dear- dor f f Family Farms n earby — and demonstrate how com- munity can be involved. The school has since been newly constructed and modernized, including new garden beds, sponsored by Harbor Freight Tools. " C re a t i n g a s c h o o l g a rd e n m e a n s you're connecting with your community," says Sharon Danks, author of A sphalt to Ecosystems: Design Ideas for S choolyard Transforma- tion. " You can bring in local v o l u n t e e r s t o s h a r e t h e i r k n o w l e d g e , a n d y o u r s t u - dents learn what's invasive and w hat 's welcom e in th e g re en w orl d aroun d th em , all valuable lessons to take with them." See the sidebar for just a few of the resources available to edu cators int ere st ed in starting and maintaining a garden, and garden-related curriculum. Garden Resources Life Lab: K-12 lesson plans, activity guides, educator workshops and consultations, Collective School Garden Network: step-by-step guidance for garden projects in gaining support and funding, planning, and teaching, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service: Schoolyard Habitat Project Guide, HabitatGuideColor.pdf KidsGardening: educator-resources Reading Rockets Activity Guides: Environment,; Gardening, article/56582; The Lorax, Our Green World: Children's books related to gardening, our-green-world Gardening Resources From the USDA: The People's Garden, From Slow Food USA School Garden Guide. Adapted from 58 Teaching & Learning Anna Cash

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of California Educator - August / September 2018