How to Start a School Garden – Help Kids Grow Healthy Food!



school gardens help kids understand where food comes from and which foods promote health as well as being a fun cooperative project a school garden gives children a great sense of achievement when the crops are ready for harvest and links to many curriculum subjects more and more parents want their children to grow up appreciating organic fresh food and research confirms that kids that grow vegetables eat vegetables whether you're a teacher in a school that is considering a garden a parent helper or a volunteer this video will give you some practical ideas to plan for success you can create a growing area in even the smallest of spaces and you don't need lots of expensive equipment to get going in fact using recycled materials and making do with waters to hand is a great way for kids to be creative and to learn about the environment so start small and plan to expand raised beds are the easiest way to start find a sunny spot somewhere that will be easily seen as this will generate interest amongst children and parents if siting the garden near a playground be sure to include fencing to protect the plants from stray balls shallow raised beds can be placed directly onto grass or deeper ones can be placed on concrete or paved surfaces build them no more than three or four feet wide so that children can reach into the bed easily without stepping on the growing area which compresses the soil and limits plant growth fill the raised beds with good quality compost to give your plants the best possible start and you're ready to start planting some schools create square foot beds to grow a lot of different crops in a small space each one foot square has a different vegetable sewn into it in the garden planner you can switch to the Square Foot Gardening mode by clicking the SFG button you can then easily arrange one foot squares of plants on your plan each Square displays the number of plants at the top left between 1 and 16 plants per square alternatively traditional planting layouts can be used which is particularly good for larger plants and rows make sure that the colored areas around the plants don't overlap to ensure that they have enough room to grow well select easy to grow crops that require minimal maintenance to give you the best chances of success to do this use the garden planner filter feature to show those plants which are easy to grow these will be displayed in the plant selection bar you can also select to only see plants that can be harvested during certain months of the year in your area particularly useful if you want to avoid planting crops that mature during the school holidays get started with some of these easy to grow plants early potatoes which can be started off in the classroom grow quickly once planted out and a great to dig up just before the summer break peas will scramble up wigwams made out of recycled materials or garden canes which are delicious eaten straight from the pod climbing beans can also be grown this way rainbow chard which grows in several bright colors and will survive all kinds of weather salad leaves such as cut and come again lettuces are very easy to grow and can be harvested over several weeks strawberries are enjoyed by children of all ages and it's symbol to create a cascade of pots which will then produce baby runner plants later in the summer perennial herbs like rosemary lavender oregano and thyme attract bees and butterflies offer strong sense to explore and can be harvested and turned into take homes in art or design classes such as scented cards or lavender bags they are easy to take care of and will grow year after year with minimal care sunflowers which are easy to grow as class competitions after flowering the seeds can be used to attract birds to the garden during the winter start them in pots on a windowsill before planting them out a few weeks later when the weather warms up for the more adventurous class why not create a pizza garden growing all the ingredients for pizza sauce then invite a local chef to teach children how to make their own pizza or pass the dishes and if you have a lot of space or can involve parents to help grow at home seeing you can grow the biggest pumpkin is an excellent activity leading up to pumpkin carving competitions at Halloween some plants will need watering and caring for during school holidays so it's a good idea to have volunteers on hand who can do this or choose crops with low water ringg needs once you've got to grips with the basics and have volunteers to help consider adding these extra features to provide year-round interest in your school garden a composter will provide you with a rich source of compost which you can put back into your raised beds and with care will allow you to reduce the amount of waste kids can be encouraged to eat fruit so that the skins and peel can be added to the compost heap but make sure it's covered to prevent was from swarming and you can even add tea bags and other suitable kitchen waste for older children studying the life cycle of plants and animals links well to composting bug hotels can be made and hung up to encourage insects to the garden and you can create mini beast areas by leaving cut logs pile together provided termites aren't an issue in your area a pond can make an excellent source for studying food chains and with luck frogs or toads may take up residence which eat garden pests such as slugs just make sure the pond has a safety grid fitted or as fenced off to prevent accidents with a little planning a garden can become the focus of many engaging school projects and can lay the foundations of healthy eating for life check out these resources for further ideas you you

5 Comments

  1. what is the computer program you are using

  2. h i

  3. Hi-that's not exactly true. CA is the #1 state with a school gardening program. Many state has implemented CA school garden into their state school gardening.

  4. I don['t know anything at all about it, but could a garden be started that isn't on the school property?

  5. Here in Cali you can't have a veggie garden at a school or group home with it being inspected and regulated by the FDA essentially making it where it's not feasible to accomplish. I ran group homes for years and could never get things going.

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