Kids and gardens go together like peas and carrots – or in this case, peas and trellises.
On a sunny morning in the garden, curious fourth graders were tasked with working together to measure and place pea trellises using only a ruler and string.
Each time an experiment failed, they came back with an even stronger strategy. With a little trial and error, they discovered they could wrap the string around the trellis, marking where it began and ended. They could then measure the distance between those two points.
“You can accomplish a lot with just a few people when you all work as a team,” said one budding scientist.
We spent the past few weeks harvesting our delicious veggies. This includes weighing and pricing them for farm stands, “just like they do at Yogurt Mountain!”
Olivia, like any of us would, becomes quickly overwhelmed, breaks down in the classroom, and feels helpless.
Her teacher takes her somewhere special: The Garden.
One of our staff, equipped with some basic Spanish, introduces Olivia to gardening.
Special moments like these are what you make possible.
“Worms look like a very long french fry!”
“It has a fruit that is an apple shape but tastes like an orange so you can prank your friends” – 3rd Grade, UPES
In a 2nd grade class at Verner Elementary, there was one girl who absolutely did not want to touch the worms during the lesson. But then at the very end, she whispered to our staff, asking if she could hold one. We gently placed one in her palm.
Unlike the worm, our curious gardener didn’t squirm at all. Her eyes lit up. She let it wiggle around for a minute.
Then she asked, “Can I bring it home? I want to play with it at my house!”
“You have to be very gentle when you hold the plants, so you don’t hurt them!” – 3rd grade student, Central Elementary
Dirty, smelly, rotten food. Sounds repellent, right?
Not to these students. It might be hard to believe that kids love to compost, but this Crestmont class can’t get enough of it. Ms. Parker’s 5th Grade students have learned that if they have a leftover snack, it can go right in the compost bin!
In fact, many of them have even been inspired to start composting at their own homes.
No word yet on how their parents feel about having rotting organic matter around the property, but we’re certain our students will convince them that composting has some great benefits!
A few of our younger gardeners get a bit nervous around some of the insects in the garden, even the more helpful ones.
This week one boy said he was going to smack a particularly persistent wasp with his clipboard.
One of our staff made a last-ditch attempt to come to the rescue of the insect. “No, that’s Samuel, he’s my friend!”
The boy hesitated and replied, “How do you know him?”
After that, it was an all-out competition to name every single wasp in the garden–they also found Samuel Jr. and Marie. Looks like they’re slowly warming up to the garden insects!
You can support our pollinators such as Samuel Wasp and his family by donating today!
Kids love to take stuff apart to learn how it works, and seeds are no exception. At the beginning of each year, our third-grade students at Verner Elementary open up lima bean seeds to see all the tiny plant parts living inside.
One concerned student though, wondered aloud if the assignment hurt his status as a real gardener. “Aren’t gardeners supposed to be helping plants grow?”
He went on to explain that they shouldn’t be killing the plants they were supposed to be raising and nurturing.
This little scientist already intuitively understood the connection between the tiny seed in the classroom and the actual living things in our garden!