Posts by Sarah Heder

Soil at El Sereno Elementary

The Pre-K students loved roaming the garden and searching for good bugs and bad bugs. I gave them pictures of different items in the garden, like a “flower” or a “green leaf” or a “ladybug” and they had to search the garden for that item. They were so excited when they found it. They loved…

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Creating Healthy Dinners at Atwater Elementary

The 3rd graders had a lesson on what a balanced plate should look like at every meal. We talked about the 5 food groups: fruits and vegetables, grains, proteins, calcium items, and fats and sugars. I passed out pictures of different food items to the class and the students had to figure out which food…

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Discovering a baby lady bug at El Sereno Elementary

Look what we found in the garden! All the students recognize lady bugs. However, baby lady bugs don’t look anything like the adults. The kids wondered at first if it was a caterpillar. A lot of people mistake these baby ladybugs as pests. The kids were shocked to learn it’s a baby ladybug and they…

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Kinders Become Bees in the Garden at Atwater

The kindergartners learned all about the anatomy of a bee. We talked about the head, thorax, and abdomen (fancy word for stomach). We learned a bee has 5 eyes, 2 compound eyes and 3 simple eyes. And they have 6 legs and 2 anntenae. I wanted to teach the kids how the bees collect and…

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We Spy Strawberries at El Sereno Elementary

The students LOVE planting seeds and eating from our garden! For the “Parts of a Plant” lesson, we ate sunflower seeds, carrots for the root, celery for the stem, mint for the leaves, broccoli for the flower, and grapes for the fruit. It is fun to see the students trying new foods and discovering that…

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The Garden Loves the Rain at Atwater Elementary

This is one of my favorite lessons to teach! The kindergartners loving eating every part of a plant — peas for the seeds, radishes for the roots, celery for the stem, mint for the leaves, broccoli for the flower, and apples for the fruit. After the students gobble up their food, they color in each…

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Delicious Snap Peas at El Sereno Elementary

We have a ton of snap peas growing in the garden. Every class got to pick off a few snap peas to try. They were very crunchy and sweet. A delicious snack! The 6th graders worked really well in small groups to create their nature boards to display in the garden. Topics that are covered…

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Finding Friends and Foes at Atwater Elementary

We’ve been talking about different friends and foes we can find in the garden. It is always exciting when we actually see them when it’s time to explore! We found a cabbage worm (a foe) and a ladybug (a friend). We are enjoying lots of tasty snacks from our garden as well. Oranges from our…

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“Farm to Table” and WORMS at El Sereno Elementary

The 5th and 6th graders learned about the concept “farm to table”. This means getting their food from local sources, like a farmer’s market or a garden in their backyard. We had good discussions about food miles, freshness of food, shelf life, nutrition, and food waste. The students split up into groups and walked through…

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Creating bird feeders and tortillas at Atwater Elementary

The 4th graders had a lesson called “Corn to Tortilla” and we had a blast making tortillas from scratch! We talked a lot about the Mayans and the significance of corn in their culture. It was pouring rain outside for the second week in a row, so we ended up in the library for our…

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Discovering Seeds at El Sereno Elementary

The students at El Sereno Elementary discovered that seeds come in all different shapes and sizes. They had fun investigating the seeds and guessing what plant the seed would turn into. And then finding some of the plants in our garden! We examined lima beans and cut them in half in order to see all…

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A Compost Relay at Atwater Elementary

One of the 4th grade classes at Atwater Elementary participated in a compost relay race. It was pouring rain outside in the garden so we had the race in the library. The students were placed in 5 different groups and had to complete 8 tasks to finish the race. Before we started the race, we…

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Ladybug Friends at El Sereno Elementary

We had a fun surprise in the garden. We counted 10 ladybugs on one plant! The ladybugs are loving the Black Sorghum plant. The students know that ladybugs are a friend of the garden from our “Friends and Foe” lesson. In our lesson today, we talked about climates and seasons. In Los Angeles, we have…

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Worms, Glorious Worms at Atwater Elementary

I think it’s safe to say that learning about worms was the students favorite lesson! We read the book “Wonderful Worms” by Linda Glaser. We talked about the fact that worms are one of the greatest friends in a garden. They make tunnels in the ground, eat rotten food, and make soil. Worm poo is…

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Talking Dirt at El Sereno Elementary

The kindergartners loved getting their hands dirty! We talked about the ingredients in soil — minerals, air, water, and organic matter. We did some investigating in the soil using magnifying glasses. We gathered around the garden beds and dug our hands in the soil. The kids described what it felt like using words like fluffy…

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The Water Cycle at Atwater Elementary

The students at Atwater Elementary enjoyed learning about the water cycle! We learned that a cycle repeats over and over again. Their minds were blown when I told them that the same water they use to take a shower in is the same water the dinosaurs swam in. Woah! We worked on the vocabulary words…

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