The students of Brook Glenn has increased their knowledge and awareness of natural resources and the environmental, health, and safety concerns and challenges that face our schools, our communities, and our Earth through Green Steps. The Green Steps program will help students develop the necessary skills and expertise to address these challenges, and to foster life-long attitudes, behaviors, and commitments in order to make informed decisions and to encourage students to become active participants in their communities*. Furthermore, by completing the steps of the program schools will discover ways that their individual school can provide a safe, clean, and green school that promotes a productive learning environment and in doing so will help to conserve and protect our valuable natural resources.
The first graders have planted an organic garden this spring. The garden has lettuces, kale, broccoli, cauliflower, sugar snap peas, and more! We are learning about plants and what they need to live and grow. We are also learning how to care for an organic garden and how it is different from a garden that is not organic. Later in the school year first graders will harvest our plants and then we will eat the wonderful vegetables we grew together! We are having so much fun learning through our garden!
Over this school year, first grade students participated in an organic gardening project sponsored by the 4-H grow healthy kids club. We plant in the fall and the spring and have harvest parties once we remove the plants from the garden. We grow many types of vegetables and herbs. We have 13 lessons on organic gardening and plants that we do throughout both the fall and spring. This project ties in perfectly with the First Grade Science Unit and Standards on plants. We incorporate our gardening into state standards and in the process get hands on motivation and learning. This garden provides food that we eat here at school and share with our families.
We have a community volunteer who lives in the Brook Glenn neighborhood who is also a master gardener that comes weekly to assist with upkeep of the garden. The garden enhances the beauty of the school and is available for all teachers and students to use. After school children also help with keeping up with the maintenance of the garden. We obtained a deck box through donations to keep our garden supplies in the garden area.
The garden has been a huge success and adds to the beauty of our school environment. Our garden is also home to a family of bluebirds and we have two birdhouses in the garden area to provide the birds with a home. It is our hope to continue to improve our garden area with a mural for next year as well as put recycled art in our garden. This project keeps growing!