Our school is a Title I school in California which means that a majority of students come from homes with limited incomes. It is located in an urban environment. The school is culturally diverse and includes Latino, African-American, and Asian children.
They are working hard and trying to do their best.
They want to learn about the world and themselves. Many of them don't have a lot of exposure to nature or gardening activities. They often don't have a yard or green space at home. I want them to love learning, nature, science, and caring! This year it was great to see students coming up with their own ideas for community service clubs like the graffiti clean-up squad.
We have a very urban city campus with no grassy areas and only a few planters. Since we're in California, we don't get rain most of the year and it's difficult to keep plants alive. Two years ago we converted the planters into butterfly gardens with milkweed and other butterfly-attracting plants. The children love finding caterpillars, butterflies, and other wildlife.
This year the Green Garden Team of upper grade students took responsibility for watering and helping care for the butterfly garden planters.
They learn responsibility, teamwork, and citizenship while having fun watering and caring for the garden and beautifying the campus. Last year we used empty milk jugs for watering and had few tools for planting and weeding. We'd like to upgrade with better equipment for next year. The students want vests to help keep their clothes clean and show that they are part of the Green Garden Team!
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