Field reports from

Montemalaga Elementary School

Final class @ Montemalaga, searching for spirals!

By team / June 3, 2015

Today we ended the school year with a wonderful story time in the garden. We read and looked at the beautiful pictures in the book Swirl by Swirl: Spirals in Nature. This book is wonderful to show that we are surrounded by spirals and swirls in nature and that if you look carefully you can…

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Planting Summer Seeds @ Montemalaga

By team / May 28, 2015

Yesterday at Montemalaga the Kinders and Pre-Kinders learned all about seeds. What is a seed, how does it grow into a new plant, what does a seed need to grow and also how to plant a seed. We had a blast planting bush beans, peas, corn and sunflower seeds! We then watered where we planted…

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The 5 Senses @ Montemalaga

By team / May 20, 2015

Today in the Montemalaga garden, the Kinders, the TKs and I explored the garden using all of our 5 senses. We tasted the spicy mustard greens, smelled the fresh mint, listened to the chirping birds, looked at the bright flowers and touched the waxy leaves of the broccoli. After our exploration we drew our own…

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Montemalaga Elem – Beautiful and Varied Garden – May 18, 2015

By team / May 18, 2015

Dee G visit: Montemalaga Elementary, Palos Verdes Elementary – May 18, 2015 In addition to the terraced shade garden, there is also a large sunny garden with engraved stepstones: Insect hotel. So much learning is going on here!

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Chips and salsa means a party, right?!! @ Montemalaga

By team / May 13, 2015

Today, as our last class session together, we made our very own home made salsa! With the summery ingredients of tomato, jalapeńo chile pepper, sweet yellow bell pepper, and green spring onions we had everything we needed to make a delicious salsa. Mmmmm…So excited to try our salsa creation! A resounding YUM from the kiddos!…

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Who Eats My Garbage??!- Montemalaga

By team / May 7, 2015

My pet worms paid the students at Montemalaga Elementary school a visit last week. I received many questions and surprised remarks such as, “These worms live with you??!!”, “What do you feed them?”, and “How many do you have??”, to which I responded, “Probably several hundred!” With squeals of glee and a few from squeamishness…

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Tasting, drawing and discovering the parts of the plant @ Montemalaga

By team / April 15, 2015

On this beautiful Wednesday in the garden my students and I explored the different parts of a plant. In three separate groups that rotated we, 1) got to draw our own interpretations of the plants “body” parts and label them, 2) search around the garden spotting the different fruits and veggies growing and label which…

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Eating the Rainbow @ Montemalaga

By team / March 25, 2015

Inspired by Garden Ranger Hope, I wanted to share how we can eat the “rainbow” today at Montemalaga Elementary School. The students, myself, Hope and intern Mary made a salad together that included all of ROYGBIV (Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo and Violet, if you didn’t know the acronym 😀 ). Our ingredients were…

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What does is mean to adapt? > Montemalaga finds out.

By team / March 18, 2015

  Today at Montemalaga Elementary School we talked about what it means to adapt. How do plants and animals change, evolve and adapt to their surrounding environment? The students had plenty of great examples! We got to go on a scavenger hunt around the garden areas to search for different plants or animals who have…

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Problem Solvers @ Montemalaga

By team / March 12, 2015

On Wednesday I asked my students if they had ever heard the word ‘engineer’. Almost every hand shot up. I then asked them what they thought a person who is an engineer does. Some responses I got were, “An engineer builds things” or, “An engineer creates new inventions, like a spaceship!” Many of the kids…

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Water Cycle with Montemalaga Elementary

By team / March 7, 2015

In lieu of the rain last weekend, we talked about the Water Cycle today at Montemalaga Elementary!   The 3rd and 4th graders are super rock starts and already knew what happens during evaporation – bodies of water turning into vapor due to the sun; condensation – water collecting into a cloud; and precipitation –…

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1,2,3 Compost! With Montemalaga

By team / February 26, 2015

  Today were learned all about compost! What can we compost? What does not break down? How do we build a healthy compost pile? And what types of organisms and life forms are working hard to turn our compost back into soil? So many interesting questions with so many fun answers! Miss Lily explained that…

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Garden Games and Finding Lizards at Montemalaga

By team / February 18, 2015

Today we began our new set of classes for the next 6 weeks at Montemalaga Elementary School. This session we have 2nd and 3rd graders! I always like to start to off the first class with a fruit and veggie guessing game and an exploration adventure through the garden. The first day with new classes…

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Fungi, Oh My! Fun with Mushrooms @ Montemalaga

By team / February 12, 2015

The fungi lesson with Montemalaga’s 4th and 5th graders was a hit! We first learned that there are different types of fungi: yeast, mold and mushrooms. Then we focused on learning about mushrooms specifically and how they grow, reproduce, find food and build relationships with other organisms in nature. After learning a lot about mushrooms…

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Zucchini and carrot “pasta” @ Montemalaga

By team / February 5, 2015

The kids got a taste (quite literally) of what a cooking class is like today at Montemalaga Elementary School. We peeled our own zucchini and carrot “pasta noodles” and added tomato basil sauce with freshly harvested rosemary from the garden. I was impressed by many of their peeling skills! Many of the students mentioned that…

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Composting at Montemalaga!

By team / February 2, 2015

Today at Montemalaga we learned about composting!! Organic matter is anything made in nature or from nature such as leaves, bark, grass and dead plants – even kitchen scraps like banana peels and apple cores! Over time, organic matter decomposes into dirt. While we could buy our own dirt, it’s cheaper and more nutritious to…

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Endangered Species Lesson @ Montemalaga

By team / January 28, 2015

We learned a lot in today’s lesson! We talked about what it means to be an endangered species. An animal or plant can become endangered in various ways as we discussed. Human impacts such as hunting, destroying habitats by building homes and other buildings, cutting down forests for lumber or other purposes, pollution (pesticides and…

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Getting reacquainted with Montemalaga’s garden

By team / January 16, 2015

For our first official garden class at Montemalaga we jumped right into talking about the water cycle. It had just rained the weekend before and the student shared with me that they had enjoyed playing in the rain. Perfect! Did you know that we have the same water molecules on the Earth today as we did…

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Montemalaga Garden Build and Rejuvenation

By team / January 11, 2015

On Saturday, Enrich La and Montemalaga hosted a garden build from 9am-1pm. We had three main goals for the day which included fixing some broken irrigation in the upper garden, installing completely new drip line in the lower garden and bringing in new soil and compost to both gardens to amend the soil. Despite the…

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