Field Reports

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Cheremoya Elementary School

The edible garden at Cheremoya Elementary School was completed in Winter 2013. It features five raised beds, picnic tables, and an outdoor kitchen area.

Garden Riches at Cheremoya

Garden Riches at Cheremoya

Learning about edible this week we wrapped with garden snacks of Lettuce Roll Stuffed with Nasturtium and Borage Flowers. Learning about the different parts of edible plants, we harvested these Nasturtium seed pods. The pods will get pickled for future snacking. Everyone learns all the time! Even our garden ranger, who, along with all the…

Lush Days and Learning with Seeds

During several indoor class days students at Cheremoya Avenue Elementary used a wide variety of seeds from which to learn, including – size, shape, color and texture. Built into these lessons, students have also used research to determine when, where and how to plant each seed for maximum success. After the rains, we were able…

Harvest, New Growth and Learning through Texture

Harvest, New Growth and Learning through Texture

With new classes coming into the garden at Cheremoya Elementary, we spent some time exploring the garden. Focusing on our sense of feel, we investigated what is growing in our garden based on texture. We also observed new growth, planted from seeds of previous classes, to start our learning process about the life cycle of…

Seed Growth and Volunteer Plants

Seed Growth and Volunteer Plants

It is always an exciting class when planted seeds spring to life. Using “Life Cycle of a Plant” diagrams, students are able to track the growth of their seeds week to week. This week at Cheremoya, we were able to see the growth rate one week after planting and several rain days. Students are also…

Garden Friend Mobiles

Garden Friend Mobiles

We are coming to the culmination of our first six-week rotation in our Cheremoya Elementary garden so garden classes this week used many aspects we have learned thus far to draw and built mobiles of things that help our garden grow. Options included the basics such as soil, sun and water along with beneficial insects…

Snacks, Friends and Foes

Snacks, Friends and Foes

Snack day allowed us to taste the varieties of leafy greens we have in abundance at Cheremoya Elementary including chard, romaine lettuce and salad greens. After our tastes were satisfied we spent time investigating the different garden friends and foes, the significance or impact of each and then took an opportunity to choose an example…

Drawing our Garden Dreams at Cheremoya

Drawing our Garden Dreams at Cheremoya

Our first day back in the garden at Cheremoya was a great one! We did observations that used our senses of sight, smell, and touch to discover what has happened in the garden over the summer. And, we took some time to draw our garden hopes and dreams to help guide our course for this…

Cheremoya – Sharing harvest

Cheremoya – Sharing harvest

Hello garden friends, Cheremoya is looking cheerful! Lots of flowers, mint is going off, and the tomatoes show promise. Today I trellised the tomatoes, watered the pots, and cut some herbs and chard for the summer staff to take home… Next visit maybe we throw in a few squash seedlings 😉   until then, Jeff

Climate and Seasons

Climate and Seasons

This weeks class we discussed climates and seasons. We went over the definition of each; weather describes the current and predicted temperature, wind/air/humidity conditions of a particular ecosystem. Where as climate is the historical weather conditions of a particular ecosystem. We discussed which season we are in currently; late Spring. The kids discovered that Los…

Parts of the Plant

Parts of the Plant

This weeks class covered the five, and sometimes six, parts of a plant and what their job is in keeping the plant alive and well. They are: Seed: Is the baby plant and is waiting for the right conditions to open up and grow roots. For older kids the seed is described as the fertilized…

Garden Salad and Soil Sampling

Garden Salad and Soil Sampling

This week’s weather was a bit damp, which was great for our newly transplanted tomatoes, basil, and beans! Many of the mature plants were calling us to harvest them and make a salad. As a group the kids and I harvested rainbow chard, cabbage, kale, basil, mint, nasturtium leaves and flowers, and calendula flowers. Then we…

Maintenance and Planting

Maintenance and Planting

The garden needed a lot of attention this week and the kids were more than happy to roll up their sleeves and get their hands dirty. Maintaining the garden means removing dead plant matter, pruning and dead-heading plants, cleaning out leaves fallen from the trees, and mulching tomato plants. Speaking of tomato plants, we put…

Releasing Butterflies and Transplanting Tomatoes, Basil, and Marigolds

Releasing Butterflies and Transplanting Tomatoes, Basil, and Marigolds

This week in the garden students learned about how to prepare a garden bed for transplanting seedlings. They got into groups and each took turns with loosening soil, adding in compost, smoothing out soil, and digging holes. The next step was watering the seedlings before placing them in their new home. Once the seedlings were…

Habitat and Climate

Habitat and Climate

What are the differences between a desert and a Redwood forest? What animals and plants live in deserts, and which ones live in Redwood forests. In the garden today we read two books, one about Death Valley Desert, and one about a Redwood forest. The students were instructed to pay attention to animal and plant…

Eat the Rainbow and Rainy Day Painting Party with Fruits and Veggies

Eat the Rainbow and Rainy Day Painting Party with Fruits and Veggies

Even though the drizzly rain that Spring is bringing us is much appreciated, it keeps us from working in the garden. Luckily I was able to gather supplies and teach a lesson in the classroom today. I gathered oranges, apples, and carrots for our painting party. Before beginning we talked about how important it is…

The Food Chain and Pea Planting

The Food Chain and Pea Planting

Last week the kids had a creative and interactive day in the garden. We discussed the definition of a food chain and how every food chain, no matter which habitat, or where in the world the food chain exists, always begins with the sun and a plant. We then went through specific examples of food…

Parts of the Plant

Parts of the Plant

The week before last we talked about seeds. This week’s  lesson was about the parts of the plant. We went over the six main parts of the plant: Seed, Roots, Stem, Leaves, Flower, and Fruit. We then discussed what function each part serves. After reviewing the parts we played a game. We split up into…

Garden Salad and Parts of a Seed

Garden Salad and Parts of a Seed

It’s always a good day in the garden when we can reap the fruits of our labor. Today was one of those days. We collected a variety of salad ingredients including; lettuce, chard, parsley, calendula petals, and mint. We added sunflower seeds and topped it with a simple Italian dressing. Most of the kids gobbled…

Drinking like a butterfly

Drinking like a butterfly

Students at Cheremoya Elementary learned about butterflies and how important and essential they are as pollinators in our gardens. Students created butterfly crafts out of recycled magazine paper, learning the wonders of recycling household items that we would normally throw out to create beautiful things. Students also learned about the butterfly life cycle and the…

Trees have fingerprints too!

Last Friday at Cheremoya, we learned that we are not so different from trees! Just like human fingerprints, each tree has its own unique pattern on its bark. The tree’s bark is like its skin and no two trees are alike! With the help of some paper and crayons, we can actually take the tree’s…

Colorful plants at Cheremoya!

Colorful plants at Cheremoya!

We tried a little science experiment on Friday using food coloring and celery to observe the way that plants absorb water and distribute nutrients to the rest of the plant. The kids “ohh-ed and ahh-ed” as the colors settled in the cups like lava lamps. We placed the celery in the cup and waited for…

Choosemyplate at Cheremoya!

Choosemyplate at Cheremoya!

So many wonderful things have been happening at Cheremoya. We had so much fun before the break making nature cookies for the bees and the butterflies. The students creativity shined as they all paired into groups to decorate their snow man, otherwise known as seed men, made out of clay, soil, water and seeds! We…

Holiday crafts at Cheremoya!

Holiday crafts at Cheremoya!

Tis the season for crafting! We made little snow men made from toilet paper rolls and egg cartons. We also decorated our own gold stars-take a look! Happy holidays!

Nature Boards at Cheremoya

Nature Boards at Cheremoya

The theme for this Friday was all the different ways we can experience and appreciate nature around us! We talked about how nature makes us feel and what we can do to create a stronger connection. We started off we a poem called the thanksgiving garden and the kids all had a chance to share…

Food Chain at Cheremoya

Food Chain at Cheremoya

On Friday, we talked about how the food chain works and how all species are interdependent on eachother. It all starts with a plant, the producer, and the energy gets transferred from one organism to the next! The kids made their very own food chains to visualize the different levels and have something to take…

The Six Stages of a Plant at Cheremoya

The Six Stages of a Plant at Cheremoya

Together, we went over the six stages of a plant (seed, roots, stem, leaves, flower, plant). The kids were able to get up and move around for the activity, stretching their roots and pretending to gather nutrients from the soil. We made the transformation from seed into plant a couple of times so that the…

Can you beet-lieve it Cheremoya?

Can you beet-lieve it Cheremoya?

Last week marked the beginning of a new six week adventure! It was already time for a new group of students to come and explore the garden. The students were excited and happy to have their time outside connecting with nature. One class found an enormous work and named him Mr. Slimy. They were sad…

Bountiful Harvests at Cheremoya

Bountiful Harvests at Cheremoya

Cheremoya’s kale plants are constantly producing strong and healthy leaves for harvesting. We took some leaves and left them in the teachers lounge for the taking! The beets are also on their way from garden to the table! The lettuce we planted a few weeks back is growing slowly but surely and will hopefully continue…

100 years at Cheremoya!

100 years at Cheremoya!

Cheremoya Elementary celebrated it’s 100th year anniversary on Friday and I was so happy I was there to see it! The school was decorated and the halls were filled with excitement as the kids took their turns presenting on stage at the school assembly. I even was able to sneak away from the garden for…

Climate at Cheremoya

Climate at Cheremoya

No better time to talk about climate than while you’re braving the high temperatures! Luckily, there was a large section of shade where we could hide from the strong sun and play our game! We learned about the two planting seasons in Los Angeles and how our climate is ideal for growing food. The students…

Chasing Cheremoya

The kids had a blast today playing the roles of friends, foes and plants. I asked them if they would rather sit and listen to me talk about bugs for 40 minutes or play a game about bugs and, shockingly, 100% of them chose the game. 🙂 They were able to run around and learn…

Catching up with Cheremoya Elementary

I was amazed by how flawless the garden looked when I first arrived at Cheremoya Elementary. The plants were healthy and thriving! I later learned that this was because of an amazing parent volunteer who regularly looks after the garden and maintains the space. Katherine is a superstar volunteer and I look forward to working…

Learning and Witnessing Plant Life Cycles at Cheremoya Ave. Elementary

Learning and Witnessing Plant Life Cycles at Cheremoya Ave. Elementary

Classes began on Friday morning with an exciting discovery: our Jasmine shrubs and beloved Sunflower both blossomed over the last week! With each gust of wind we were enveloped in the fragrant smell of Jasmine. Perfect timing too, since this week’s lesson was all about the life cycle of plants! The kindergarten classes drew their interpretation of the…

Inspired and Intrigued at Cheremoya Avenue Elementary

Inspired and Intrigued at Cheremoya Avenue Elementary

Last Friday morning brought with it some gloomy weather at Cheremoya Avenue Elementary. To be sure our garden classes would not be rained-out, Ranger Taylor and Claire shlepped this week’s lesson to room 11. Luckily, there were some dry periods when classes could spend a few minutes in the rain-kissed garden. The lesson this week…

Fruit Tasting and Treasure Hunting at Cheremoya Avenue Elementary

Fruit Tasting and Treasure Hunting at Cheremoya Avenue Elementary

Garden classes are back in session at Cheremoya Avenue Elementary. This week, Cheremoya warmly welcomed a new garden ranger, Taylor! A review of the garden rules was followed by lots of exploring the beautiful garden. The student’s enthusiasm for their school garden is truly inspiring. The students played an exciting garden scavenger hunt game. They were impressively swift…

Cheremoya Elementary Having Tons of Fun Before Thanksgiving

Cheremoya Elementary Having Tons of Fun Before Thanksgiving

Ah, the wonderful Friday before vacation. This week at Cheremoya was very fun with buzzing energy in the anticipation of Thanksgiving break.  Ranger Elysa brought plates and crayons so that students could practice drawing some protein, vegetables, fruits, grains and [of course] dessert! Students were asked to think about how the foods they drew came from the garden. For instance,…

Cheremoya Students Explore Plant Parts

Cheremoya Students Explore Plant Parts

This week at Cheremoya, our students discuss different parts of the plant and their jobs. Then, we took it to the garden to see if we could point out the parts on different types of plants. It was more challenging than it seems! Pointing out a tomato, or the FRUIT of a plant.   Swiss Chard, or…

Cheremoya Looking Splendid and Ready For New Students

Cheremoya Looking Splendid and Ready For New Students

Last week, Cheremoya said good-bye to Mrs. Carlton, Ms. Gotz, Mr. Cheung, Ms. Petrou, and Ms. Iwataki’s classes as their Garden Session ended on a beautiful day. The garden is growing absolutely fabulously, take a look below! Checking out spiders under the table Our Snow-Pea TeePee! The Kale Looks Amazing!!

Cheremoya Students Doing A Bit of Everything

Cheremoya Students Doing A Bit of Everything

Cheremoya Elementary’s garden classes are going GREAT. We’ve learned a ton so far, have eaten delicious snacks, and even began planting seedlings last week! Take a look at what our students have been up to: See you next week!