Monday, October 14, 2013

Garden Visits

This September & early October, several students visited the Helping Hands Garden at the elementary school.
In total, we had 86 first graders, 92 second graders, and 17 third graders visit the garden for a quick 30 minute lesson on our senses in the garden. Additionally, two kindergarten classes visited the garden and dug their hands in the soil and spotted the different plants growing.

Students got to touch various plants and soil, smell the flowers, herbs and veggies, see the array of colors and produce (I think every student was distracted at one point because they spotted something new!), heard mostly wind, and tasted many things right off the plant like water cress, kale, and various herbs. The students also tasted beets, peppers, cucumbers, or tomatoes during their visit.
Fourth graders harvested the garden the first week of October. They were responsible for picking, washing, weighing, and recording some of the produce they helped plant last year. The class was broken into smaller groups, so while half were in the garden picking, the other half was journaling some thoughts about going into the garden or what they remembered from last year. The groups switched about half-way through their class time. Some of the written comments were:
"I feel happy & excited to be in the garden. It just makes me feel open and free."
"I liked pulling the beets from the ground. They gave me a tomato I didn't like it."
"Last year I planted tomatoes in the school garden. I can't wait to go and harvest them today. I think it's going to be great!"
A special thanks to Master Gardeners Chris & Nancy for their help with the students