The Garden at Oswegatchie School is a sustainable organic garden where children get a hands on experience learning where their food comes from while developing an appreciation and respect for nature. The Garden will be a learning center to teach gardening as well as incorporating art, music, literature, math and science. It is a place where children are encouraged to join in and participate in the process of creating, developing and maintaining the garden!

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Last Session of the School Year

Working together to plant the seedlings.
We held our last Garden Club session of the school year this week. It was a scorcher compared to the past few weeks but the students worked really hard to plant all of the seedlings they started so many weeks ago in the Library Grow Lab. They planted watermelon, cantaloupe, pumpkins, squash, and tomatoes. According to the Stella Natura calendar, today was the perfect moon phase for planting fruit. 

We haven't done much cooking from the Garden this year so we thought we'd end the school session with a quick and easy recipe. The children made a Massage Kale Salad. This salad is the easiest salad to put together. Our kale in the Garden isn't quite ready yet so we used local organic ingredients instead. The base of the salad is kale, olive oil, lemon juice, and salt. You can then add any other ingredient you like our have available. To keep it really simple we just added fresh organic cherry tomatoes. Some children have never used a knife before. It is our philosophy to give children the proper tools so they may become adept at any skill. They all took turns cutting, juicing and tearing the ingredients.

Tearing kale.

"I love slicing lemons, they smell so lemony!"

adding the juice

Massaging it until it is soft


Final product

I let the students add the ingredients as they deemed appropriate. Cooking is all trial and error and every opportunity for mistakes is a teachable moment. After the tasting, some children thought the dressing was too lemony while others thought it was just right. We talked about how cooking is all a matter of personal taste and how we can do things differently based on weather we are making a dish for ourselves or to share with other people. 

After their healthy snack the students got busy getting the seedlings into the ground. They worked as a team planting each bed together.

The plants directly sowed into the Garden over the past few weeks are doing well as are the perennial beds. We saw evidence of several praying mantis nymphs so have deduced that the other two cases have hatched. We also saw a very large grasshopper. I hope he doesn't decide to snack on the new mantis nymphs. We are off to a great start leading to the Summer session.

Mantis nymph searching for food.

Ants and peony seem to have a symbiotic relationship.

blue eyed grass

strawberries coming along nicely

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