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Three Sisters Garden

Liz Ayers,   Pleasant Hill Elementary
Three Sisters Garden

We "dig" the importance of highlighting healthy foods at school. During the first week of school, every students spent time in the school garden helping prepare the beds and planting the Three Sisters Garden. The garden is an authentic native American garden consisting of corn, beans and pumpkins. Each grade level was assigned an age appropriate job in the garden. During their PE/Health class, students worked in the garden. Jobs included laying underlining, painting the beds, filling the beds with dirt and compost and planting the seeds The students even released lady bugs to help with pest control. Students will continue to tend the garden; seeing it through from seeds to soup. In the fall when the produce is harvested, the school cafeteria will use the produce to make a soup that will be served at our "Soup-abration".

What improvements have you seen at your school?

The garden has been an avenue for parents to become involved in school. We are a Title 1 school and students' parents are often intimidated to volunteer at school. The garden has proven to be a great way for parents to connect. When homeroom classes sign up to care for the garden for a week, parents come to help too.

How do you plan to make this Play last during the school year and beyond?

The Three Sisters Garden is our fall garden. In the spring, we will plant a pizza garden. In both cases, students will plant, tend and harvest in the garden. The produce will then be prepared and served in the school cafeteria.

How did students and adults work together as a team?

The garden coordinator worked with the PE teachers to plan and implement the garden kick-off lesson. Students literally had their hands in the dirt in the garden. Once the garden was planted, homeroom classes were able to sign up for a week to tend the garden. Throughout that week, the garden coordinator presented lessons and oversaw the work in the garden. Parents were invited to help in the garden during their child's week in the garden.