Sullivan Pre-School Garden

“Thank you, Worms!” | Sullivan Prek

Today, I introduced my favorite garden friend to my classes at Sullivan: The ordinary earthworm. These little creatures are more than just cute (as one preschooler described the red wrigglers), they take care of the earth beneath our feet. Worms make tunnels in the ground that help the roots of plants stretch far and wide…

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Seed Saving with Preschoolers at Sullivan

Today’s three words to discuss were Flowers, Bees and Seeds. Together, we learned how how these three topics relate. Holding up a sunflower that had grown in their garden, I asked the kids at Sullivan Prek to identify what I was holding. “A flower!” many students shouted. We labeled the color and even learned the…

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From Garbage to Compost at Sullivan

The students at Sullivan were in for a treat today: playing in the dirt! During my morning garden maintenance, I realized I hadn’t mixed the compost bin in over six months and set forth to do just that to see if any black gold could be found at the bottom of the pile. To my…

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Exploring Leaves at Sullivan Prek

Today was much too cold and windy to visit the garden with the Sullivan kiddos. So I brought samples of different kinds of leaves to their classrooms. We observed the different shapes and textures and smells of the leaves, trying to guess what some of them were. One student commented that the mint smelled like…

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Making compost from garbage at Sullivan PreK

Hello, Sunshine! How happy we are to finally get a chance to see you in the garden this month! The kids at Sullivan Prek love to play in the dirt; so today we talked about COMPOST. Together we read a book, narrated by a little girl who told us that her garden grows from garbage.…

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New Veggie Tasting at Sullivan Prek

The sun is back! My students were SO happy to finally come back to the garden after two weeks of rain. We spent the majority of class tasting a new veggie. I introduced them to Swiss chard, a colorful winter green similar to lettuce and spinach. It was fun getting them to say the name…

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A Happy Garden | Sullivan

“Rain, rain, go away, come again some other day.” While we are tempted to sing this song lately, the gardens are fabulously flourishing after all of the rain. Sullivan Preschool’s garden has plants popping up in places I didn’t know seeds were planted. And biodiversity has been much easier to accomplish because the entire bed…

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Spirals in Lettuce | Sullivan

Today was a day for SPIRALS. Me and the kids read a really fantastic book called “Swirl by Swirl” that illustrates how we can find spirals in nature…. So then we looked for them in the GARDEN. This lettuce is a spiral! And a tasty one at that! 😀 This cow pea vine climbing on…

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Preschoolers Help Weed the Nutsedge at Sullivan

The weeds at Sullivan Prek are quite a hassle. I have a parent helping me to thin out the grass-engulfed beds weekly, but I thought it would be fun to have the kids involved, too. One of the beds was completely empty except for the grass growing so I thought, in preparation for new plants,…

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Swallowtail Caterpillars at Sullivan Prek

What a fun surprise! My students and I discovered a new garden friend hiding in the leaves of parsley today. With its green body, black stripes and yellow dots, it camouflages quite nicely. We learned that this little guy will turn into a swallowtail butterfly, colored yellow and black. At this point, it will fly…

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New Preschoolers explore at Sullivan Prek

With the new year, there are new kids at Sullivan Preschool. So I made it a priority to teach all the classes specific rules for the garden to reinforce next time we meet. Most of these students are three and four year olds so repetition is needed to create a calm space in the garden.…

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Oregano is Green thanks to AMAL!| Sullivan Prek

This summer month has been so hot that the oregano is bolting without a break. I finally cut it back to allow this herb to start over. To give it a boost, I watered the oregano bush with AMAL last week … And already the leaves are beginning to turn green! Check it out ….

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Exploring seeds at Sullivan 

Learning about seeds is so much fun! Preschoolers at Sullivan learned how a seed grows – from their roots and root hairs to the stem to the leaves leaves – then performed some garden yoga by growing like a seed. Finally, we dissected a zucchini and pulled the seeds out of the flesh. One students…

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Sullivan Parent Workday

What a great day! Sullivan coordinated a garden day for the parents and about fifteen families showed up to help out in the garden! We accomplished everything from weeding (so much nutsedge and crabgrass!) to pulling out old plants, to planting new seedlings, to pruning bushes, to harvesting herbs & veggies, and collecting sunflower seeds.…

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Harvest 9.8.16 | Sullivan PreK

Mmmm — what fun it is to share the bounty with the teachers at Sullivan! After handing them this basket of harvest, I slipped in a few recipes for chard salad, eggplant parmesean and lavender tea…

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Cleaning Tables at Sullivan

(Before and after!) During my lunch break today I asked a parent if he wouldn’t mind helping out in the garden. All the picnic tables, grimy from street residue, needed to be scrubbed clean so the kids’ bums didn’t turn black every time they sat down in garden class. The task of cleaning the tables…

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Beautiful Blooms | Sullivan

Today was catch-up day at Sullivan. In two beds, I planted new Russian kale, mizuna and lettuce seedlings; pulled out a few old sunflowers; and harvested mint, collards, chard and kale for the lovely ladies in the office. ‘Twas a beautiful day, with the breeze blowing through, promising rain! Check out the beautiful, blooming flowers –…

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DIY flowers | Sullivan

Today my little preschoolers collected flowers from the garden, dissected them and attached them to a picture of a flower 🙂 While we were at it, we learned about the parts of the plant, too! How cute are they?!?

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Finding bugs | Sullivan

Today we looked for bugs in the garden. We were inspired by a Cat in the Hat book called “Beyond Bugs.” It’s a bit of a long book for a class of preschoolers so we read just a couple of pages and discussed them. One page in particular describes the SpittleBug which hides itself on…

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Tasting Lettuce with Prek | Sullivan

Today the Sullivan prek-ers gleaned from the garden. We saw where the lettuce grew, picked purple and romaine lettuce, talked about the differences (colors, shapes, size, flavor) and tasted it together. Most of the kids prefered romaine but were willing to try both! During our short garden tour, some kids enjoyed one-finger-touching the different things…

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Is it Spring? | Sullivan Prek

Is it spring? It’s hard to tell since the heat wave swept in last week. The plants are a little confused and require a bit extra water to counteract the hot rays. So the kiddos helped the garden grow happier by giving them an extra drink! Students walked around in pairs, carrying a watering can…

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Sunflowers Grow Tall | Sullivan Prek

My dream is for the fence in Sullivan’s garden to be LINED with beautiful, smiling sunflowers. Since the flowers currently growing are nearly at the end of their prime, we began planting more to transplant next month… Ranger Hope

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Our beautiful Compton gardens

While traveling south, I was able to visit 5 of our beautiful Compton gardens- Foster ES, Whaley MS, Dominguez HS, Sullivan Pre-K, and Bryson ES. Our rangers and students are doing a wonderful job maintaining these spaces. I loved visiting Sullivan Pre-K, which is maintained by Garden Ranger Hope and Garden Volunteer Extraordinaire Dee, and…

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Are You a Ladybug? | Sullivan Prek

“Are you a ladybug?” the book begins, “Because if you are, your parents probably look like this [an adult ladybug].” The book continues to illustrate that this red and black beetle is born from an egg, then enters the larva stage, sheds its skin three times before becoming a pupa, then sits very still to…

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Update of Sullivan Garden

I haven’t updated the status of Sullivan Prek’s garden in some time so I thought this week I’d highlight the successes and challenges. The garden is slowly but surely coming together since its genesis in September 2014. It’s been a lot of work for me but I have a trusty volunteer – Dee – who…

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Rainy Day Crafts | Sullivan Prek

The muddy garden deterred us from exploring it today but it was nice to create a garden patch of our own indoors. With simply a muffin tin, pom-pom, crayons and paper, the preschoolers made a beautiful bouquet of poppies! Check it out… During maintenance time, I cleaned up some plants as well as pulled out…

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Wiggly Worms | Sullivan

Today was super fun as we observed worms with the Sullivan prek classes. These night creatures danced and wiggled on the table, not too happy, but still willing to show off their pinkish flesh. To my surprise, only a few kids out of six classes were scared! Most were super amazed and gentle with the…

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Happy Helpers | Sullivan Prek

What happy helpers I had at Sullivan’s garden today! While practicing sharing and with smiling faces (some weren’t so happy about having partners ;)), the preschoolers helped us water the plants. They did such a great job! We have been learning how to behave in the garden each week and each week these kids have…

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Hungry Very Caterpillar | Sullivan Prek

For the last few weeks we had been observing the monarch caterpillars munching on the lonely milkweed plant in Sullivan’s garden. But today they were all gone! Regardless, I wanted to talk to the preschoolers briefly about the lifecycle of caterpillars. So we read The Very Hungry Caterpillar and played bingo! Then we explored the…

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New Garden Friends | Sullivan Prek

Today it was a joy to introduce new classes to the garden. After talking about how to act in the garden and going through the 5 senses in class, we all walked into the garden to discover what is growing! – Ranger Hope

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Harvest at Sullivan

I dropped by Sullivan today to briefly check on their garden and ended up harvesting a bounty! Squash, peppers, tomatoes, brussel sprouts, cabbage, flowers and herbs! All of this I left with the office ladies. One was particularly excited and grateful!! ~ Ranger Hope

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Sullivan Update 9.11.15

What a glorious feeling walking into a school garden after a two-month summer to find that it growing marvelously! While there is a LOT to do at this garden like weeding, plant fall seedlings, mulch the beds and assemble another compost bin, Sullivan Preschool’s garden space is so much more than its start last September. What…

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Sullivan preK – summer is over, fall year begins

DeeG – August 31, 2015 visit Today, I spent the 4th visit to this garden in 2 weeks preparing to transfer to the new ranger. I weeded a couple of beds that were infested with nutsedge grass. This bed has some mature broccoli plants near the fence. Both are ready for planting fall vegetables.  …

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With most of the weeds gone, vegetables shine at Sullivan

If there’s one thing spending a hot summer day pulling thick weeds out of garden beds has taught me, it’s that the saying “grows like weeds” is not a joke. It was a long day at Sullivan Preschool, but I’m happy to show off the final product of clean garden beds, bright fruits and vegetables emerging…

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Another sunny day at Sullivan Preschool

Today was a massive weed pulling day at Sullivan Preschool. Some of the vegetables you will find growing here are broccoli, squash, and tomatoes, many of which will soon be ready to harvest! This garden also features bright, colorful flowers alongside the edible plants.

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Before/After Sullivan Prek

Since January, I’ve been taking care of Sullivan Prek’s garden weekly. From being completely bare, to growing peas (twice!), lettuce, carrots, radishes, beets & arugula; to growing flowers, herbs, potatoes & sunflowers; to growing peppers, tomatoes, squash, beans, strawberries, more herbs, more flowers & more potatoes, the garden is ready for summer! Check out the…

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Sullivan PreK – May 22, 2015

Dee G. visit to Sullivan Crystal Stairs Headstart Pre-K in Compton on May 22, 2015. Beautiful garden and FANTASTIC facility! Lemon Tree Large Sunflower!!! Carrots – I LOVE this sign!  

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How a Seed Grows at Sullivan

It always makes me smile when my students can teach me the lesson I’ve prepared. This week’s lesson was How to Plant a Seed. As soon as I started introducing to the little preschoolers what they were going to learn, eager hands popped up all across the room. The students began sharing that in order for…

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Fuzzy flowers at Sullivan

One of my favorite lessons to do is the Five Senses lesson with preschoolers. I bring a bag filled with different leaves, flowers, textures, colors, smells and sizes and hand them out to the kids to let them smell & touch. I also give them paper if they want to draw what they’re observing, or…

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