The free online course to plant and care for a vegetable garden in your school.
How can vegetable gardens be places for early childhood learning, growth and inclusion?
Planting and caring for a school vegetable garden can be difficult due to several factors, such as unsuitable school location, lack of funds, access, maintenance limitation during the school holidays, lack of specialised teachers or personnel. To bring a permanent educational project to fruition, thorough and adequate training is needed to set up a permanent school garden.
GARDENStoLEARN is a free online course for early childhood teachers, school managers and educators. It consists of three different modules, complete with lessons, educational resources that can be downloaded and exercises to learn how to plant and care for a vegetable garden.
The modules include:
- planning information needed up-front, before setting up a school garden, such as identifying a suitable location, conducting a market survey, fundraising, networking and sustainability;
- technical guidelines to choose, set up and permanently care for a suitable type of garden, either an on-ground or off-ground garden;
- more material on inclusion, a collection of the best educational practices and hands-on early childhood workshops.
GARDENStoLEARN is part of GARDENStoGROW Urban Horticulture for Innovative and Inclusive Early Childhood Education, a project co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union, which is focused on creating educational vegetable gardens and training courses for early childhood teachers and school managers to set up and manage themselves a permanent vegetable garden in their schools.
The GARDENStoGROW activities that are carried out at school can be further investigated by attending the Nature and its shapes workshop, the event introducing some of the GARDENStoGROW workshops that takes place during the training course for early childhood teachers to set up workshops and playful scientific activities through tinkering and STEM experiences.
Training courses by Explora are available on the S.O.F.I.A. platform.
Explora is accredited by the Ministry of Public Education (MIUR) for training (Dir. Min. 170/2016).