This innovative new program shares resources and practical tools with students and schools across the community. Participating schools and local organizations have each received a kit providing a garden tower, lights, aprons, garden gloves, heat mats, seeds, a watering can, fertilizer, mini shovels and spades, and everything they need to grow food in their classrooms all year long.
Vegetable gardening can be a satisfying and rewarding activity with just a little direction, some good advice and inspiration. Gardening is a unique way for children and youth to build a relationship with their food and develop life skills such as problem solving, coping skills, and resilience. Teachers have integrated the garden tower into various subjects such as science, math, and art.
This engaging program connects youth and educators in growing healthy, nutritious food and promotes the development of a better understanding of how and where the food we share, and eat is grown and produced. The garden towers in the classroom inspire conversation and learning about nutrition, food sustainability and food security. Students are encouraged to take on a leadership role by being given the responsibility to care for and maintain the garden towers, vermicompost and plants.
Excerpts from a blog by several students:
Today on this lovely Monday afternoon we Dirt Dudes watered the plants, took the temperature (22 degrees), and we made sure the top soil was wet and moist and not bone dry. this was all we did on this uneventful Monday.
December 4, 2017
Today we checked the worms temperature and it was at 25 degrees Celsius. We need it in between 12 and 24 degrees. if it exceeds 27 degrees we need to take the worms out and cool it down. we watered and most of the plants growing excellent.
Today, we didn’t do a whole lot but we did water the plants quite a bit. A few problems is we found multiple plants dead and we also found mold on the top soil of the garden tower. The main source of the problem we have discovered is that the plants and soil is being over watered. This is definitely something we should discuss when feeding the worms on Friday!
November 20, 2017
First part, we started out by building the garden tower. The day after we added in the dirt, but we messed up the central column, so we had to take out all of the dirt and fix it. we put the dirt back in, but the central column got messed up another time, so we had take out the dirt again, we had to repeat this one more time. Finally, we got it kind of perfect because we decided we couldn’t get it any better, so we just kept it that way. we set up the lights for the peat coins so that we could start the growing the plants. now we get closer to today, we transferred the plants to the garden tower and the swiss chard is growing better then kale.