Event Title

School Gardens: Cultivating a Child's Nutritional Habits, Environmental Knowledge, and Sustainability Practices

Presenter Information

Jeffrey Meltzer, Colby CollegeFollow

Location

Diamond 145

Start Date

30-4-2015 9:00 AM

End Date

30-4-2015 11:55 AM

Project Type

Presentation

Description

School gardens have been around since the late nineteenth century and today are becoming increasingly popular in many parts of the world, including Maine and Australia. Maine has several different organizations supporting school gardens, including the Maine School Garden Network, which has over 125 registered school gardens. In Australia, the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation primarily supports the school garden movement and has over 800 registered school gardens. This thesis combines primary research from both areas to examine the ways school gardens can impact students nutritional habits, knowledge of the environment, and practices of sustainability. Secondly, this thesis explores the factors that go into successful school garden programs and puts forth recommendations for policymakers, organizations that support school gardens, schools with existing garden programs, and schools hoping to start garden programs. This study finds that school gardens hold the potential to: encourage students to eat more nutritious diets, teach students about environmental processes and issues, and inspire students to live environmentally friendly lifestyles. Successful school garden programs often contain some or all the following components: clearly defined goals, passionate teachers, paid coordinators, stakeholder groups, parent and community involvement, greenhouses and winter programs, diverse funding, small group sizes, student leadership, and planned maintenance over breaks. Schools that start small and carefully plan their gardens can positively impact students, their families, the community, and the environment for years to come. Because of their promising potential, policymakers should consider giving school gardens increased attention, support, and funding.

Faculty Sponsor

Russ Cole

Sponsoring Department

Colby College. Environmental Studies Program

CLAS Field of Study

Interdisciplinary Studies

Event Website

http://www.colby.edu/clas

ID

966

Share

COinS
 
Apr 30th, 9:00 AM Apr 30th, 11:55 AM

School Gardens: Cultivating a Child's Nutritional Habits, Environmental Knowledge, and Sustainability Practices

Diamond 145

School gardens have been around since the late nineteenth century and today are becoming increasingly popular in many parts of the world, including Maine and Australia. Maine has several different organizations supporting school gardens, including the Maine School Garden Network, which has over 125 registered school gardens. In Australia, the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation primarily supports the school garden movement and has over 800 registered school gardens. This thesis combines primary research from both areas to examine the ways school gardens can impact students nutritional habits, knowledge of the environment, and practices of sustainability. Secondly, this thesis explores the factors that go into successful school garden programs and puts forth recommendations for policymakers, organizations that support school gardens, schools with existing garden programs, and schools hoping to start garden programs. This study finds that school gardens hold the potential to: encourage students to eat more nutritious diets, teach students about environmental processes and issues, and inspire students to live environmentally friendly lifestyles. Successful school garden programs often contain some or all the following components: clearly defined goals, passionate teachers, paid coordinators, stakeholder groups, parent and community involvement, greenhouses and winter programs, diverse funding, small group sizes, student leadership, and planned maintenance over breaks. Schools that start small and carefully plan their gardens can positively impact students, their families, the community, and the environment for years to come. Because of their promising potential, policymakers should consider giving school gardens increased attention, support, and funding.

http://digitalcommons.colby.edu/clas/2015/program/292