Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Kid's Gardening by Arlene Wheeler

Kids’ Gardening
When I’m not enjoying life at Jensens, I’m enjoying teaching kids gardening. As a Garden Coordinator for Winnipeg Harvest, I have been fortunate to be able to attend many classrooms, daycares, churches and other places the past couple of years to teach the ‘Blue Box Gardens’ program (planting corn, beans and squash in a blue recycling bin), a new initiative under the Kids Who Care program. Using the ‘Three Sisters Garden’ as a teaching method, the connection between the land and the community is exemplified. It is a very symbolic garden consisting of Corn, the oldest sister, standing tall in the centre, providing support; Squash, the middle sister growing over the mound, protecting her sisters from weeds and keeping the soil cool and moist with her large leaves and Beans, the youngest sister climbing through the squash and then up the corn to bind all together. Each of the sisters brings and takes a different nutrient from the soil. All the planting is done in a blue recycling box. The program teaches basic container gardening and what plants need to grow. Containers can be easily moved to a sunny spot in the yard or taken with you if you are moving to a different place. You would be amazed at the vegetables that can be grown in a container. At Winnipeg Harvest we have onions, corn, beans, squash, cauliflower, cabbage and many other vegetables growing both in blue recycling bins and raised beds.
Gardening teaches so much to both children and adults alike. Gardening teaches patience, respect of property, a greater respect of all living and growing things and it gives a great sense of pride. Gardening is great for the soul. My friend, Kevin Twomey from T&T Seeds and I were speaking about this a few days ago. Kevin says gardening time is ‘thinking time’, and he’s absolutely right. It’s a peaceful place where we can work on our own, collect our own thoughts, create beauty, grow some vegetables and forget about all the problems of the world. One of the best places to connect with children is in the garden. A garden can be a magical place of mystery and wonder and this leads to knowledge. Children will blossom right along with the flowers when they are included in ongoing garden projects. Sign up today for one of our Saturday Family Day gardening classes at Winnipeg Harvest. Bring the family for half hour to an hour session. If you are unable to come down on a Saturday and you are part of a daycare, church group or any other group or club and would like me to come out to teach our program, call Winnpeg Harvest and we’ll arrange a time. We’ll have some fun and you will soon see what can be grown in a container! There is no charge for any of our programs!

Riddle for kids – Why do potatoes make good detectives?????

Answer – Because they have a lot of eyes!
Posted by Tammy Jensen at 12:00 AM 0 Comments