Planting with students is an exciting and positive experience for teachers and students alike!
Planting is a simple process, but can be challenging once you have 30 students all clamoring to get their hands in the soil. The tools, activities, and process outlined here will ensure you plant correctly and each student has a complete and impactful experience in your Learning Garden.
Give Context to Planting:
- Let your students know what they are planting and why.
- Review the timeline for the day and the planting activities.
- Find ways for students to be involved in the Learning Garden after a planting day. Teaching garden lessons, watering, and harvesting are great ways to stay involved and be continually rewarded by their work.
- Review Big Green’s Learning Garden Classroom Management document for more support on how to create a meaningful experience in your Learning Garden.
Use a Planting String:
Try our Planting Strings to make sure your Planting Day goes smoothly. Planting Strings help adults keep track of where seeds have already been planted and help guide and direct students through proper spacing of seeds!
Refer to our Planting String Activity for reference and make Planting Strings with your students prior to planting seeds.
Break your class into smaller groups:
Planting with students requires direct attention from an adult so working in small groups allows you to give that direct attention. Involve volunteers, have them run additional activities in small groups while you plant with a small group of students. Work with your Garden Team to recruit volunteers to help out with your planting day or advertise to your student’s parents. Have volunteers lead the following activities to engage small groups and have the groups rotate between activities:
Provide opportunities through the classroom for your students to follow up on planting:
Planting a Learning Garden is the first step in a long term project with many rewards. If you are involved in planting your Learning Garden, be sure you coordinate with your school’s Garden Team to see if you can continue to be involved with watering, caring for, harvesting, and eating from the garden. If you are unable to water with your students in the future, be sure to schedule time to bring your students back out to the Learning Garden to observe the growth and learn through garden lessons and activities. To see your seeds sprout and grow, and to harvest and eat the garden you planted are each profoundly rewarding experiences that will captivate the minds and passions of your students.