The school entries are continuing to amaze me.
The children are so enthusiastic about ‘growing their own’ and some have even postponed harvesting their veg until they have been judged – that’s discipline! These potatoes (left) were harvested as we judged today and the pride on the kids faces is obvious. One teacher voiced the benefits of the children growing their own; “When I asked what we used potatoes for, one little boy said ‘chips’ and then when asked and where did they come from, he shouted ‘MacDonalds!’. It’s a fabulous way for them to learn where really food comes from.”
Another pupil proudly munched his way along the salad row as he told me what each type of lettuce was and a charming young lad at one of the special needs units told me about his plans to be a grass cutter for the council when he grew up. Gardening is a great leveller and all you need is a bit of energy and passion which these children have in abundance. Not only are they learning about how food is grown but also life skills, like planning, patience, commitment and teamwork, though I had to laugh when a little girl was digging a hole to plant a beautiful agapanthus for the school to remember her by as she was moving to a new school next year. As she hit a stone we were all impressed by one of the lads stepping in and digging the stone out for her ….. before handing her the spade back to finish digging the hole while he watched with folded arms. Classic!
Also deserving recognition and a big thank you are the teachers, caretakers, parents and helpers who are responsible for making it possible for the pupils to grow their own. From clearing ground and constructing raised beds to watering and watching over projects, they freely give of their time and expertise too. Well done to you all!