Organization: Hillsmere Elementary
Hillsmere Elementary is executing their school garden plan with a single bed in the spring. The curriculum committee with work on incorporating sustainability activities, including an irrigation system for their proposed rain barrels, with 5th grade classes as they design and build out the garden space. Hillsmere plans to construct the first bed just outside the windows behind the Kindergarten classes so students can enjoy the garden from inside. With an overarching plan to grow the project year over, the school is certain the steadily budding garden project will encourage healthy eating habits via their seed to table garden!
The school plans on incorporating “green” projects in tandem with routine gardening practices. For example, the garden’s green roof will funnel down to recycled rain barrels to provide water during the summer. Teachers have already begun teaching best practices in sustainability among their students, like composting uneaten food into red earth worm composts to generate nutrient-rich soil. The school is positioned within the Chesapeake Water Shed, where they hope efforts to create rain, flower & vegetable gardens encouraging sustainable practices will soon prevail.
Faculty will teach students the nutritional benefits of all harvested produce. Since Kindergarten children (Age 5 & 6) will also be using the garden as an extension of the classroom, vegetation will be used to help explain basic lessons like the colors of the rainbow as they are found in the spectrum of whole plant based foods. Greater lessons like the body need for essential vitamins and nutrients will help children lead happy and healthy lives. With wholesome, organic foods providing children more energy and stronger bodies, Hillsmere plans to encourage their students to elect healthy eating habits by reconnecting them to the source – Mother Nature!