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tomatoes, herbs, and some perennials. We also included the wish of our princi-
pal, Peg Harangody—a small potted tree, which would have lights for Christmas.
Parents and students came through the summer to water the garden. The student
council purchased a bench for the garden. A local business paid for an electrical
connection. An older gentleman installed a water hose connection closer to the
garden. Teachers now use the garden for science lessons and reading time. The
students are so proud of their garden.
Dyana’s dream of a school garden provided the energy to get the project
off the ground. If you happen to have, or be, this passionate person, you are
off to a great start. In chapter 3, we share how you can build a team of people
who are invested in your garden project. Of course, in an ideal world, all of
the teaching staff would work together to plan and learn about the garden.
There are several ways you can involve the entire staff. To create interest, you
can arrange for your staff to visit a nearby school that has a strong gardening
program. If this is not possible due to time or expense, you can do an image
search on the Internet and create a slide show of successful school gardens.
You can have staff meetings where a Master Gardener guides the staff in activi-
ties in the garden. You can give each staff member an area of the garden to
help the children design, plant, and care for. You can have workshops on gar-
dening that involve the staff in garden activities to give them more knowledge
about how to garden. Also, make sure that you actually have the teaching
staff in the garden during the training. We made the mistake once of inviting
a Master Gardener, who spoke to our staff in a classroom. Although he shared
excellent information, the training was not effective. Because they didn’t actu-
ally go into the garden, the teachers didn’t develop the intimacy with the
garden and the confidence they needed to do the work we wanted them to
do with the children. Just like young children, adults benefit from hands-on
learning experience. Plan to give them plenty of opportunities to work along-
side avid gardeners and nature lovers, because over time, this confidence can
be contagious. Whatever you do, make sure you are working together and that
you are providing teaching staff with the information they need to be success-
Why Garden? • 21