How Gardening Can Teach Children At School
July flew by too fast and here we are already at the beginning of August. Many stores are advertising back to school sales already. While most children will be learning the standard reading and math, some schools are opting for a different type of learning; gardening. Gardening has begun to take hold in many schools and it is actually teaching kids good lessons about eating healthy, the science of growing plants and even some lessons in Economics from selling veggies at farmer’s markets.
Teachers have reported that children that participate in gardening are more likely to engage in the classroom and with their peers. School officials are also reporting that there have been lower turnover rates of teachers who assist students with gardening. When children go home, they are also more likely to want to try new fruits and vegetables because they helped in growing them.
Gardening at school also teaches children about environmental stewardship. They learn how to engage in sustainable agriculture and learn about their environmental impact. Growing plants and gardening can also be a great physical activity. It provides children with activities such as digging, planting, and weeding. Many teachers are using the garden as a way to teach other subjects as well. The gardens teach science when students study plant growth and they also learn math by creating charts of the fastest or slowest growing plants.
The program is called REAL School Gardens and it was just started at its 100th school. It has grown so popular with children that administrators are reporting kids trying to return from summer vacation early! This program was created by teachers and they have proven again and again that children who garden have a better rate of academic success. If you are interested in setting up a garden at your child’s school, the Scholastic website has some great information on how to do so.
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