It’s full of bugs. It’s messy, it’s dirty,
and it’s the place on campus our kids would most like to be.
Park Day School
has beautiful grounds, and children have been working plots in our
garden for most of our school's history.
We have a lovely sunken garden area with raised beds for student use and
space for an after school gardening club. One example of a
long-standing project: our third graders plant a garden, harvest
it in the spring and serve the vegetables as part of their service
learning project in a local senior shelter.
As we've expanded our campus and our
efforts at being a model green school, a group of committed parents and
staff have envisioned and begun to incorporate a full seed-to-table
Learning Garden as part of our rich science curriculum. The garden has expanded to our newly acquired property, and a
mini-farm has been developed, including chickens. Each year we have expanded the
garden program, and currently the program serves students in
kindergarten through fifth grade. Students work with our gardening
teacher once weekly and have access to the garden during lunch and after
school. The curriculum is rich and varied, matching the needs and
guidelines for science at each grade level.
By growing and eating vegetables, [children] learn to see themselves as part of natural cycles. Our health depends on the health of our food, which depends on the health of the soil. Children learn that we are embedded in the soil. They see that we are not apart from nature, but a part of it, and therefore we must play our part.
Our Mission It
is our objective to establish an organized, sustainable educational
gardening program that introduces students to the life cycle concepts of
planting, growing, harvesting, cooking and eating their own healthy,
organic food through hands-on learning.
Vision Stewardship through hands-on learning:
and responsibility for the natural world
Value of hard work and
Pride and pleasure of fresh food they’ve grown
Natural life cycles
Major Components Food Literacy and Health
New fruits and
vegetables encourages experimentation with new foods
eating locally and seasonally through harvesting, cooking and eating
healthy eating habits and unprocessed foods
Seed to table to
compost: full cycle
Relationship of food and culture
Integrated Curriculum Ecology
of garden offers multi-disciplinary connections and deepening of
Farm animal care
Geography, history, writing, math,
Community involvement with local shelter
connection with local public school
Allies for change through
project selling student made green cleaners at local farmer"s market