Caring for the school’s vegetable garden project
RECIPIENTS: all pre-school, primary and secondary school children
The garden project is proposed as an activity in which pupils are stimulated to get in touch with nature. Maria Montessori gave much importance to cosmic education, within this subject area falls the aspect of “the cosmos in the garden,” where the child gets to observe natural cycles, interdependence between human and natural ecosystems, observation of plant and animal biology (e.g. small insects).
Through the direct approach, children stimulate manipulation, observation, and exploration. A synergistic garden was chosen because this type of agriculture aims to cultivate in harmony with nature, to live without destruction, and to reconcile human needs with those of nature. A vegetable garden divided into eight sections was created, inspired by the compass rose.
The wind rose, also called “wind star” or “wind symbol,” is a diagram that schematically represents the origin of the winds that persist in a given region, during a rather long period of time. The references are the cardinal points.
The winds have given names to the eight garden beds: Tramontana, Mistral, Ponente, Libeccio, Ostro, Scirocco, Levante and Greco.
To bring the child closer to the natural world, creating conditions for direct observation of natural cycles and stimulating a connection with the natural environment.
Caretaking and planting of plants, stimulating observation skills, knowledge of some plant varieties, manipulation and use of various materials (soil, seeds, plants, water, straw).
Permanent project started in the academic year 2014/2015.
Starting this school year in September and October, Primary and Secondary school students will operationally follow all stages of saffron cultivation. Starting from planting the bulbs, observing plant growth, harvesting the flowers, collecting the pistils, drying and packaging the finished product.
Pre-school and elementary school children will take care of the eight garden beds on a rota, starting from planting seeds in pots to planting the sprouted plants. The garden will be cared for at all stages, watering, sowing, transplanting, light soil movement, mulching. For older children, topics such as the plant life cycle, the relationship between humans and the environment will be covered.
Younger children will learn about the development from seed to plant, the botany of a plant, being able to observe its various parts.