Integrating Curriculum Into Your School Garden
- Will the whole school use the garden or only certain classes? Will there be a flow of garden curriculum throughout the grades or will only certain teachers use the garden?
- Determine which teachers have interest and experience in gardening and which have interest but no experience.
- Are there structures in place such as school wide composting, a reduce/reuse/recycle program, or a Green team that can support the garden curriculum?
- Will parents lead the classes or parents and teachers together? Ideally, they should teach together. In this way, teachers can reinforce and enhance the student’s classroom-based activities with outdoor learning.
- Determine the amount of time that a teacher is willing to commit to the garden. Weekly, monthly, or only at random as time allows.
- Will there be a garden coordinator who can assist the garden curriculum integration?
The strongest garden curriculum tie-in to classroom learning is science followed by ecology, nutrition, math, language arts, and art in no particular order. References for linking school gardens to CA standards are as follows:
- A Child’s Garden of Standards CA Dept of Education 2002
- CA Curriculum Guidelines for Agricultural Literacy
Other curriculum material can be found online or mail order through:
- CA Dept of Education
- National Gardening Association
- Marin County Stormwater Prevention Program
- Earth Steward Gardener Curriculum
- Center for Ecoliteracy
- A Handful of Seeds – Seed-saving and seed study information – Grades K-6
- Closing the Loop – Grades K-6
- Instructional Activities for School Gardens
- Kids Cook Complete – Grades 2-7
- Nutrition to Grow On – Grades 4-6
- Setting up and Running A School Garden – Teaching Toolkit
- School Composting Manual
Click here to request a school garden consultation.