First grade teacher, Wilmette, IL
Our school garden brings teachers one more creative and energizing methodology that helps promote the development of the whole child. It is a stimulating resource that accents our curriculum across all grade levels and encourages the child-centered philosophy we hope to maintain at our school. Students are naturally led to wonder, discover, and make valuable connections in the garden that support basic curricular standards. The garden provides opportunities for "hands-on" experiences, where children can learn by doing a variety of multi-sensory tasks. This outdoor sanctuary helps nurture the social/emotional needs of every child as they learn to care for the environment. Children become respectful stewards of the earth as they work with the tiniest seedling or observe the most delicate butterfly. Our school garden has become a delightful place of endless learning and growing together! Students, teachers, parents, and neighbors are thrilled by the garden's beauty, but more importantly, by the limitless possibilities for everyone to experience the magic that nature provides!
Special Ed teacher, Waukegan, IL
This [project] has enabled the students to assume ownership and responsibility of the garden and their school....After the planting day many students brought their parents by the school to see what they did. Students claimed ownership by stating "I planted this tree, I dug the hole for this plant", etc. The students are eagerly anticipating upcoming spring projects such as painting the shed, fence, spring planting and murals.