The Garden is a Classroom
The garden classroom
Have you ever seen the look in a child’s eyes when she or he sees the first butterfly? I have and to me that look is the best definition of wonder and awe that I can come up with. Education should inspire similar reactions.
The pure delight of finding something you did not know before, something new. The joy of discovery when you see a butterfly emerge from a cocoon or watch bees buzzing from flower to flower on their endless journey to collect pollen for the hive.
The garden, both at home and at school, is a safe environment where children can experience discovery, while learning about nature and so much else.
Reading a scene from Romeo and Juliet after watering the roses in the garden, and then talking about the uses of rose hips, could make a dynamic lesson that helps the child appreciate Shakespeare, roses and wild food.
We learn by doing and when the teacher or instructor can couple the theoretical or the literary experience with a real world event the lesson will take on a deeper meaning.
Math is a necessary part of gardening; read the instructions on a seed pack and then create a math problem based upon that information.
If the gardeners are growing peas and pole beans for example, they will need to build supports which also requires math in addition to basic mechanical skills.
Biology and botany are obvious garden subjects. How does a garden grow? This is a short question but the answer introduces the student to photosynthesis, pollination and soil science, for example.
Plants have their own history and students can journey back through time by tracing how a plant came into being and explore geography when they uncover the various lands that plant may have traveled through over time.
A vital lesson is the most obvious one, where food comes from and what real food tastes like. Have you ever bitten into a just picked tomato, still warm off the vine?
The awareness that food does not originate in the grocery store nor naturally come in microwaveable boxes will change the learner’s relationship with food and those who produce it.
If your child’s school does not a learning garden think about starting one. Talk with the principal, to start.
If you have a garden at home and are not already gardening with your young ones do so, you will create memories and lessons that will last a life time.
bee and sunflower
- Elizabeth Barrett Browning: The Deserted Garden
I MIND me in the days departed, How often underneath the sun With childish bounds I used to run To a garden long deserted.
- The amazing web site of Shakespeare\'s Sonnets. Commentary. Sonnet 54.
Shakespeare Sonnets Text with commentary All 154 sonnets Love Poetry
- Plants Theme Unit - Worksheets, Math Problems, Puzzles, and More!
Plants Theme Unit