Instructional gardens are often placed post hoc in locations that are less than ideal. They are frequently far removed from primary learning spaces, making them difficult to seamlessly integrate into the daily experience of students. Even with the best of intentions, they can easily become neglected and fall into disuse.
Instead, gardens placed directly outside learning studios, learning commons, or culinary arts kitchens with strong indoor-outdoor connections make for easily accessible, meaningful additions to the outdoor learning environment. To do this, gardens should be considered from the onset of the design process and intentionally designed as an integral part of the school and the daily learning experiences of students.
Related Patterns Indoor-Outdoor Connections, Learning Commons, Butterfly Gardens
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- School Gardens: Can They Make Our Children Smarter?
This article describes the wide-ranging benefits of school gardens, including developing self-regulating abilities, increased academic performance, increased working memory and attentiveness, and developing a love of vegetables. The end of the article contains a list of organizations that can help fund the school garden projects.
- Edible Schoolyard: A Universal Idea
This book describes the first few years of the journey to establish a garden at a local middle school in Oakland, CA by Alice Waters, a renowned chef, author, food activist, and the founder and owner of Chez Panisse Restaurant who was inspired by the French example of gardens at the heart of their cuisine.
- Teaching From the Garden: Creating Transformative Learning Landscapes at Schools
This article provides comprehensive details for starting and maintaining a school garden.
- How to Start a School Garden: Your Complete Guide
This article is another great how-to guide for starting a school garden, including several resources for funding.
- The Edible Schoolyard Project
This website contains a searchable resource library with project ideas and lesson plans.