I had a fantastic start to my day – planting a school garden with the staff and students at Cheatham Elementary School in Laveen, AZ. It made me wonder why school gardens are not in every neighborhood! We planted so many herbs and vegetables including lettuce, spinach, carrots, bok choi, swiss chard, kale, cilantro, onions, broccoli, cauliflower, even brussel sprouts.
It was so stimulating! This was real life science, math, history, recess, even health. Lots of the kids committed to trying new veggies we planted that they had not heard of and learned about the benefits of a healthy lifestyle. They also learned how to garden without chemicals, we made our own trellis for our beans, it was priceless watching the kids talk to the plants. One of the 2nd graders told the plants he loved them and would miss them over the weekend… it was definitely lots of awwwwwww moments. And it was a great way to take a break from the computer to bond with Mother Nature.
In my opinion, or maybe it’s just my hope, that school gardens lead to home gardens which lead to more people making our environment a priority. I think it will build stronger doctors and engineers because when we are connected to nature, we design with our environment in mind. What do you think?
Back to the start of my day – one of the things that made it so pleasant was that the kids really wanted to learn… and they ranged from second grade to sixth grade. They paid attention, they asked questions, they were respectful, they helped and taught each other; you could feel the joy, the positive energy throughout the garden.
A large part of that addicting energy was due to the teachers who volunteered to help. They were just as excited as the kids! They were patient, fun and had no problem getting dirty.
None of this would have happened without the help of Arizona Worm Farm, who donated all of the compost for the garden beds.
Arcadia Colors Garden – not only did they donate seeds and plants, but they also gave us some great DIY ideas, including the trellis we made for our beans.
None of these volunteers and businesses hesitated because they were all passionate about growing and protecting their communities. What a breath of fresh air!
The plan is to build gardens in schools all over the Valley.
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