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Welcome to our first school gardening club post. Along with another parent I’m running a lunchtime gardening club for the Year 4s (8- and 9-year-olds) at my daughter’s school. And what a lovely first group of young gardeners we have – they all turned up, put on their gloves and got stuck straight in.
Our school gardening club mission
The aims of the club are:
:: for the children to enjoy lots of hands-on experience of growing. We’re trying fruit, vegetables and flowers and will be finding out from the children what they would like to grow
:: to make the garden as eco-friendly as possible, reducing, recycling and reusing as much as we can, and trying to encourage lots of wildlife into the garden. We’re using peat-free compost and looking for organic ways to garden
:: to create a beautiful spot in the centre of the school, which offers plenty that tastes, smells, feels, sounds and looks great
:: to do this frugally, using some of what we grow to raise funds and with kind support from parents by way of donated vouchers, seeds and seedlings
We are very lucky to have a great set up ready and waiting for the gardening club to use. Our Secret Eco Garden is in an enclosed courtyard, with two raised beds which get plenty of sunshine, a mini greenhouse and a compost bin. We have water in an adjoining classroom and are working out the best location for our water butt so we can collect and use rainwater. We even have two picnic tables and benches. It’s a really great space to get growing.
School gardening club: October and November ideas
:: harvest the last of the tomatoes
:: plant some raspberry canes
:: feed the soil with chicken manure pellets (I thought the kids would turn their noses up at this – in both senses! – but they loved it)
:: plant for some spring prettiness: tulips, daffodils, winter pansies, wall flowers
:: plant an end of term take-home gift: hyacinths
:: sew some rocket and hardy salad
:: pot up the strawberry runners
:: sew some sweetpeas to over winter in the greenhouse
:: plant onion sets and garlic
:: decorate a flower pot to show off the hyacinths
:: make our own plant labels
We’re really excited to get started on our Secret Eco Garden. I’ll be sharing some of our planting ideas and garden crafts as we go along and I’m hoping you’ll share some ideas with us too. Are you involved in a school gardening club – any tips, any recommendations, any sites you’d suggest for us?
Creative ways to use nature to inspire learning