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Watch Our Garden Grow at Parks-Heath

Janice Longino,   Amy Parks-heath El
Farm to School — Know Your Foods
Access to Healthy Foods,  Community Involvement
Watch Our Garden Grow at Parks-Heath
From a small group of students who were excited about a garden, we have accomplished the following: (1) Full garden beds growing all year (2)  Flower buckets planted for pollination (3). Garden seats for students to sit and learn (4) Making our own compost (5) Butterfly garden created (6) Irrigation system made (7) Grandparent volunteer group to help students in garden (8) Two master garden volunteers (9) Weekly science and garden lessons taught to our students. (10) APHE PTO fundraising to build an outdoor learning center to extend the garden and science lessons for all students. (11) Volunteer architects, community donations, and business investors are helping with completing the outdoor building facility.

How did you accomplish your goals?

From a small group of excited FUTP 60 students, and seven garden beds, we have accomplished the above list. Parents, grandparents, and invested community businesses, have allowed our students to experience so many successes. Students and Teachers became invested in our project as well as grandparents and master gardeners. Our students actually made a fresh salad grown from our garden this year. It just continues to grow and has become a legacy. It is not going away.

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

This play is continuing to grow because of the community involvement and the empowerment of our students. With the dream of a garden coming true, we are now building an outdoor center for kids to experience a higher level of thinking while growing as gardeners. They are learning about the importance of compost, recycling and eating healthy from their own garden. This has transferred to the discussion of farming and our small part in that field, at least for our school.