Returning to the Garden at Glenfeliz Elementary


Things are getting off to a great start as the second semester is underway at Glenfeliz! Our last lessons were three weeks ago, and it was a very welcome feeling to return to the garden. Thanks to a little bit of wet weather, our soil seems replenished and the seedlings we planted in our final week are rooted and thriving! Lots of brussel sprouts, cauliflower, and assorted lettuces on the way!

To shake off our winter breaks, we started this week with a little warmup ‘seed’ stretch: starting out as seeds on the floor, students were guided through incremental stages of growth where their bodies mirrored a seed setting out its roots, leaves, and flowers. By the end of the stretch, students were standing with sturdy roots and blooming flowers with their fingers stretched out! We cycled through this stretch a few times to demonstrate that from one seed you can grow countless generations of plants.

For the rest of our lesson this week we worked on our observational skills by doing some sight-drawing. When we think of a carrot, we think of the color orange. But if we’re actually looking at a carrot while it grows, we usually only see the green foliage that grows above the ground. And sometimes when we finally uproot our ‘orange’ friend, we find out that it is actually purple, white, or yellow! So our focus this week was to draw what we could see, and students were tasked to do as detailed a drawing as they could of just one plant in their garden beds. Students were working in four groups and compared their illustrations within their group to find different details that their peers’ separate vantage points provided them.

Moving forward with this unit, we will continue to explore our sensory perceptions in the garden and do a lot more creative work as every student will be keeping a personalized garden journal to track all the exciting things we learn in the coming months!

Teddy Menard

Hi there! I'm Farmer Ted. I love nurturing plants throughout their growth from little seeds to nutrient-rich produce. As an educator, there is no more important space for me to share knowledge with youth than in the garden, where my experience as a chef also informs my relationship to the things that we grow and the creative ways we can approach our harvests!

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