Have you seen the garden in the Outdoor Classroom? We have tomatoes planted by last year's first graders that are five feet tall, sunflowers that seem double that, swallowtail caterpillars enjoying our carrot greens, and pumpkins that are taking over the walkways (even if they are affected by a bit of mildew or blight--or both)!
During the second week of school the 5th-8th graders were treated at lunch to cherry tomatoes, cucumber slices, and broccoli florets. They were surprised to hear it had all grown in the school garden and quickly polished off four platters of vegetables. Cucumber slices were the crowd favorite. The other grades will be treated to fresh produce in the coming weeks.
And every student who orders an October smoothie will enjoy St. Giles's very own carrots in their drink! If we are lucky we will have a few slices of watermelon and cantaloupe to share with those smoothies. It's been a very productive summer in the Outdoor Classroom. Stop by and see all that is growing!
More Than A Beautiful Landscape: A Mindful Design
The Outdoor Classroom will be a series of spaces, which can be built in phases as funding is acquired. Components include an open space for seating and instruction, a vegetable and fruit garden, and a pollinator garden for local birds and insects. The space is intended to be cross-curricular, serving students from preschool to 8th grade.
Jeanne Nolan, owner of the Organic Gardener assessed the school landscape and designed a plan. Her professional experience includes planning numerous school gardens in the greater Chicago area in addition to the Edible Garden at the Lincoln Park Zoo--a field trip favorite of our kindergartners.