Creating an Organic Vegetable Garden as a School Project Creating an Organic Vegetable Garden as a School Project

What You'll Need
Small shovels (one shovel for each class member)
A planting area

If you're a teacher, you've probably wanted to come up with an organic vegetable garden lesson plan that not only teaches teamwork between your students, but teaches them patience and gives them tangible results. Few projects are more applicable to this than a class vegetable garden. Allowing your students to plant a vegetable garden will not only give them the tangible results necessary for early learning, but will teach them perseverance and how to work towards a long term goal.

Step 1 Gathering Seeds

The first thing you want to do is gather seeds. Take a vote in your class and see what your students want to plant. Doing this will give them the ability to look forward to something specific that they themselves chose. If your students selected carrots or potatoes you're in luck, because these two vegetables are roots and as such can grow an entirely separate plant from one root. Otherwise you're going to have to spend a little bit of your budget on the seeds.

Step 2 Dig the Garden

This is where the shovels from your tool list come into play. You want to assign your students teams and then assign each team a specific vegetable to plant. Doing this will encourage them to take care of that area, because they will know that they planted it and are in charge of taking care of it.

Step 3 Set Up Daily Maintenance

This is what sets up not only perseverance but organization. Set up a specific time during the class day for your students to go out and care for their vegetable patch. This includes watering and pulling weeds out from the area. Let each team be responsible for their own patch. Doing this will instill a sense of pride in their work and possibly even competition, which will lead to more progress.

Step 4 Set Up a Grading Scale

Set up a scale for you to grade the children on their vegetables. Make it a team grade and don't just judge on how big the vegetables get. Base the grade on the teamwork throughout the team and the effort put into caring for the garden. Award a prize to the team that gets the highest grade on their vegetables.

Step 5 Harvest

When the vegetables are full-grown let the children harvest them. Let each member of a team take at least one of the vegetables. This will allow them to see their work and turn this into a tangible lesson.

Step 6 Teach a Commerce Lesson

After you've allowed your class to harvest their vegetables allow a time for trade of the vegetables. Use this time to teach them about economics and the value of trade. You could use this trade time as a lesson on world trade, economics and even history. This could also be used as a nice segue into a lesson about Christopher Columbus and the sailing trade routes throughout the world.

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