Spring is in full swing, and so is our garden! Lately, the children have been busy tending to the gardens in the playground, observing and participating in the gardening and harvesting of our crops. So far, we have had three harvests of sugar snap and snow peas. More surprisingly, we have also found daikon and onions in the garden! These experiences inspired us to explore gardening further.
Our latest approach has included gardening in the rain gutters outside of our classroom, the Castle Room! We are growing microgreens just as our kindergarten mentors taught us. To begin, we topped the preexisting soil with additional soil and planted several of the little microgreen seeds. Using a pitcher, we have faithfully watered the greens each day and are happy to announce that they are sprouting beautifully.
On your way in or out, be sure to stop and talk with your child about their latest gardening experience. This encounter has not only been a great way to get outside and enjoy the fresh spring air, but it has also provided the children with a foundational understanding of the science behind plant growth. They have been able to witness firsthand the lifecycle of a plant, from seedling to sprout, and have actively participated along the way. They have also been able to discover the vital roles that water and sunlight play into the growth of a plant, and how plant life effects human life since we eat what is grown.
By observing the changes in the garden as a result of proper water and sunlight exposure, the children have been able to further understand the concept of cause and effect. They have also been able to feel a sense of accomplishment and affirmation of their work, knowing that their diligence in tending to the plants resulted in success, growth and life. Seeing the project from start to finish also left plenty of room for the students to form their own hypotheses regarding what might happen to the plants and form conclusions based on what they could see and touch once the plants sprouted.
Our upcoming food explorations and experiences with the nutrition team will support our current gardening and help the children see the connection from “farm to table.”