Big Garden "Thank you"!
The Growing Matters Garden program would like to thank all of the community members who came to garden night this summer to help keep everything growing. We are excited to have students come back to the school garden and enjoy the fall harvest! We would also like to thank the Women Who Care of Kalamazoo County and Food Dance for their generous support of the Growing Matters Garden program.
The Growing Matters Garden program provides garden-based, hands-on learning opportunities for local youth and the larger community. Our main focus is to support and coordinate activities at the Woodward Elementary School garden.
The Woodward School garden has areas for growing vegetables, herbs, strawberries, and flowers. During the school year classes enjoy the produce they have grown. This summer, produce will be shared by garden night helpers as we keep things growing for the fall.
Over 300 students are involved in learning activities in the garden each year! Students put their hands in the soil and better understand where their food comes from, how great it tastes right from the garden, and why growing organic is so important. We work closely with teachers to align lessons with state standards in science, math, and language arts.
We facilitate an after school club (Club Grub) that explores healthy eating, gardening, cooking, and nutrition through games, hands-on activities, and group discussions. We taste different foods and make/eat a healthy snack together every week! Club Grub is made possible by partnering with Kalamazoo College's Mary Jane Underwood Stryker Center for Civic Engagement.
Working in food justice and education, our staff explores anti-bias /anti-racism (ABAR) teaching techniques to "support all children's full development in our multiracial, multilingual, multicultural world and give them the tools to stand up to prejudice, stereotyping, bias, and eventually to institutional 'isms'." (1)
Are you interested in lending a hand
with our program? Please fill out a volunteer application or stop by the
Woodward Elementary School Garden night during the summer
break. In addition, we'd love for you to sponsor-a-gardener
to help us cover our program costs.
(1) Excerpt from "Anti-bias Education for Young Children and
Ourselves" by Louise Derman-Sparks & Julie Olsen Edwards.