School Gardens and Engaging with Students
When a child explores the food he eats for the first time, he or she should have an intimate knowledge of how it was grown. The hand of a small farmer should not be too carefully shown.
How much emphasis should the proper nourishment of a student’s body be placed? Indeed, little did your child know or imagine that he would in time become a foot soldier in the development of your national community.
According to David W. Hulmes, the North American Alumni Club President, “Only about 1 in 9 schools in the US has a certified school garden at least one year old! This level of neglect is shameful. In Sweden, over 70% of kindergartens have school gardens, and these schools have about triple the private rate of drinking water than any other school.”
The kids used to sit around the yard or in the cafeterias and when children are not waiting in lines or on their way to and from playgroups, that time is spent enjoying the beauty of the edible garden. What they see on their visit, be it the pine cone plant, the spruce tree, or the sole tree, makes them very happy.
The green of an edible plant is meant to be looked at and enjoyed!
With less than 6 percent of kindergarteners having gardens at their schools, we have to seriously question the level of investment being made by schools in culinary arts, and the timing of investment.
To make the most of school garden investments, develop a model that benefits all children, not just the majority of the children who enjoy the outdoors. Even the most casual of children have a desire to look after earth, and whether we call it gardening or gardening or edibles, the project needs to be tailored for these kids.
Is the garden uniform or is the model named by popular community group “Red=Farm”? What approach is taken for harvesting the produce? Who comes together and plants the seeds? Who weed’s the garden? Who takes care of the craft and the gardeners in the daily visits? Is everything perfect on a weekly basis?
Maintaining and policing a garden is no easy task. Yet, the investment already made provides a good opportunity to harvest what kids can go through. What is being delivered is a quality experience for the students at their own table. This experience can be shared with any kid, any time, anywhere.
The garden at the school is a “Home in their Own Garden”. It is their place, and theirs to have at any time, to relax, to work, and to express their creativity.
By Joakim Granström
Wellness and Wellbeing Consulting Coach
9:30 a.m., July 10, 2018