Each spring our students plant vegetables and herbs in the Outdoor Classroom before saying goodbye for the summer months. Throughout the summer, the plants have a chance to grow uninterrupted allowing nature to do what it does best! This means that the Outdoor Classroom tends to become a tad bit overgrown- but more importantly, it gives the plants and ecosystem a chance to thrive.
Shortly before school begins, the Giving Tree teachers return to tame the space and to make it ready for students. We pull weeds, refresh the 10x10 sand box and begin to harvest some of the vegetables from our plants.
This year we have a wide variety of leafy greens, cucumbers, various tomato species, herbs, pumpkins, green beans, sunflowers, carrots and flowers growing. We are excited for the children to see the "fruits of their labor" come to life!
If possible, we will plan to hold a "farmer's market" in which parents can purchase vegetables from our students. All proceeds go back into the Outdoor Classroom funds so that we may continue to offer farm to table experiences for our students.
For the last several years, the Early Childhood has participated in Outdoor Classroom Day. This global initiative helps to get kids outside to learn, play and grow. This year the Early Childhood celebrated with a wide range of outdoor activities. Gardening, bubbles, shaving cream, chalk and paint were just a few of the play opportunities explored!
The EC children worked collaboratively on a giant canvas to freely create and to express themselves through various paint techniques. From spray bottles to finger paints, the children worked hard to create their masterpiece! This beauty resides as a mural in our green space and will be revisited throughout the remainder of the school year.
The playground and outdoor classroom were also hot spots for activity! Shaving cream, paint, bubbles and chalk artwork were enjoyed by all as we spent the day engaged in play! Check the Giving Tree Facebook page to see more photos of our fun!
Mrs. Ashley is the Director of Giving Tree Early Learning and mother to 3 busy boys! You can reach her by emailing- email@example.com