A couple of years ago, I had the pleasure of working with some inspiring volunteers at Wells Branch Elementary to help them with a design that would turn their large courtyard into an outdoor learning space with raised beds, vegetables, a greenhouse and a labyrinth. It's such a vibrant community that I was delighted when the Central Texas Gardener decided to feature it in one of their recent episodes. Check it out!
I used to live in Wells Branch and, even though my boys went to a different elementary school, Wells Branch Elementary is a hub of the neighborhood. We spent many Saturday mornings there with my sons' soccer games, so when I was contacted about helping them with their design, it was an easy decision. Anyone who is a gardener knows what they get from their gardening activities, but what about children? When kids participate in the garden, they learn:
Where their food comes from
To try different foods
How to plant seeds and transplants
How to take care of living things
About the cycle of life
How to harvest food
How to identify bugs, good and bad
If your children's or grandchildren's school doesn't have a similar program, consider creating one! The kids at Wells Branch Elementary even formed a little Farmer's Market where they sold their harvest, and then bought a greenhouse with the proceeds. This school has many, many dedicated volunteers, which is the best way to keep a program like this one going from year to year. Have you been involved with a school garden program? What was your experience?
Congratulations, WEB, on a job well done -- keep planting, growing and learning.