Project summaries - 2014 Food Gardens in School

For 2014, 25 additional Food Gardens in Schools grants were approved for projects that work with children with special needs.

The additional approved projects are highlighted blue in the following table.

2014 Food Gardens in Schools grants
(all grants are $3,500 each)
OrganisationProject title

Albury North Public School

K-6 Crunch and sip garden

Argenton Public School

Lead safe food garden project

Arthur Phillip High School

Hands on garden nook of tranquillity and purpose

Ashfield Public School

Ashfield Public School courtyard food garden

Billabong High School

Billabong food garden

Black Mountain Public School

Black Mountain school garden

Blackheath Public School

Blackheath Public School 'cool school' kitchen garden project

Bobs Farm Public School

Pest patrol - teaching integrated pest management

Bonville Public School

Land to lunchbox garden - relocation and rejuvenation

Budawang SSP

The hanging gardens of Budawang

Casula High School

Hands on edible and native garden: Special Education Unit

Cooranbong Public School

Growing our future

Cundletown Public School

Cundle green thumbs

Dunoon Public School

Dunoon school diggers

Edgeworth Public School

Edgie's veggie garden

Gorokan High School

Gorokan High School support garden project

Greenacre Public School

Worming for food…here and there!

Holroyd School

Holroyd School food garden project - grow healthy, be healthy!

Hunter River High School

Our garden project

Iluka Public School

Three ‘S’: simple + sustainable = success

Inner Sydney Montessori School

Wicking worm grow beds

John Palmer Public School

Sensory organic food garden

Kadina High School

Sustainable living, healthy eating

Kurrambee School

Participation, engagement and understanding: Kurrambee food garden

Lake Munmorah Public School

Fresh is best

Manly West Public School

Manly West kitchen garden

Manning Valley Anglican College

Establishment of a food garden - garden to plate

Marayong Public School

Chives, chickens and children: an oasis in suburbia

Marks Point Public School

Marks Point market garden

Moorefield Girls High School

Promote sustainable and healthy living

Murwillumbah Public School

Lettuce grow

Orange High School

Vegetable garden

Queanbeyan West Public School

The not so secret garden

Rowland Hassall School

From garden to plate

Sapphire Coast Anglican College

Diggers patch - you can fix the world's problems in a vegie patch

Shoalhaven High School

School grown vegetables

Southern Cross School

The support centre K-6: food garden project

St Ives High School

St Ives High hospitality garden

St Joseph The Worker Auburn South

Kitchen garden

St Joseph's School Narrandera

Our sustainable garden

St Mary's Primary School Corowa

Sow to sustain

St Patrick's Primary School

St Patrick's kitchen garden

St Raphael’s Catholic School

St Raphael's vegetable garden project

Summerland Christian College

Growing good food

Tallowood School

Tallowood farm and gardens

Tomaree High School

Support playground food garden

Toormina High School

Support village garden

Wentworth Falls Public School

Carrots to catchment management from our organic kitchen garden

Woniora Road School

Horticulture program - growing for the future

Woodenbong Central School

Woodenbong Central School community food garden project

 

50 grants at $3,500 each, totalling $175,000

Albury North Public School
K-6 Crunch and sip garden

We absolutely want to make a difference. This is the inspiration behind the Crunch and Sip Garden Project at Albury North Public School. Our plan is to develop a garden which engages all students, (including our multi-category disability class) in sustainable environmental practices and which allows them to design, plant, maintain, harvest and taste freshly grown, succulent fruits and vegetables. The garden will provide learning opportunities in Literacy, Numeracy, Creative Arts and Environmental Studies. Our hope is that these practices will educate students about their ability to make life-long decisions to benefit their own health and best promote a sustainable environment for future generations.

Argenton Public School
Lead safe food garden project

Argenton Public School wants to build not only a best practice school food garden with chooks, worm farm, compost and rainwater tank, but also to set a precedent amongst sustainable schools by incorporating knowledge of the industrial history of our area (ex-lead smelter nearby) to overcome the potential for lead contamination of our soil and rainwater and by creating a lead-safe school food garden teaching unit as a model for other schools. Exposure to lead and other toxics will be reduced by lab testing soil and rainwater and avoiding products such as weed-mat and treated-pine.

Arthur Phillip High School
Hands on garden nook of tranquillity and purpose

Transforming a small bland and under-utilised space into a functional growing oasis to promote ecological consciousness to the whole school. Edible plants and those with sanative benefits are chosen to both provide ingredients to the school kitchen and enhance the social wellbeing of students with disabilities. Benefits include engaging students in a welcoming environment to observe, discover, experiment, nurture and work cooperatively. It reinforces classroom curriculum across subject areas and life skills. Kitchen and gardening experience will also promote health and pride. We want to create an oasis that provides food for the body, mind and spirit.

Ashfield Public School
Ashfield Public School courtyard food garden

Providing students with the opportunity to cultivate vegetables, fruits and herbs that represent the diverse cultural backgrounds of our community, this food garden will be unique in the way that it caters to the needs of the students with moderate learning disabilities. With a significant proportion of students living in multi-storey dwellings, the school grounds often represent the only opportunity for hands on gardening experiences. The food garden will also provide a rich educational tool, providing students with an opportunity to explore how they can incorporate sustainable choices into their everyday lives, thereby multiplying environmental benefits throughout the local area.

Billabong High School
Billabong food garden

The students will work collaboratively with their peers, staff and the local community to establish and maintain a chicken pen and vegetable garden. Students will learn about how to be sustainable and care for their environment. Students involved will learn to be responsible for the project with supervision and motivation by staff. Students will learn the concept of being self-sufficient.

Black Mountain Public School
Black Mountain school garden

Black Mountain Public School is a small rural school with 23 students, located 11 kilometres from Guyra, NSW. The purpose of our gardening project is to establish and improve the knowledge, health and well-being of children in our community of kitchen garden preparation, planting and harvesting. It will allow for the construction of four edible food gardens in raised garden beds and will enable the school community to share in the growing and harvesting of fresh produce. Food produce from the garden will be for the children. This project will ensure a positive and supportive environment whilst providing hands-on learning for our students.

Blackheath Public School
Blackheath Public School 'cool school' kitchen garden project

This project will revitalise and enhance our existing food garden and breathe new life into the sustainable food ethos of our 'cool school'.  We will develop a garden plan to help guide the project for years to come; we will rejuvenate our composting program and undertake a waste and resource use audit; we will continue to maintain our existing garden beds throughout the year (even when it is cold); we will build a high quality greenhouse to allow propagation during the cold winter months; we will plant a cool climate orchard; we will build a chook run to help recycle food scraps and provide our canteen with fresh eggs; and we will create an outdoor learning space for all to enjoy. Our students, teaching staff and school community will be intimately involved in every aspect and will learn about selecting the right plants and animals, creating the right conditions for them to grow and nurturing and harvesting and most importantly eating all that we produce. This will provide a healthy lifestyle incorporating exercise, healthy eating and understanding of the environment.

Bobs Farm Public School
Pest patrol - teaching integrated pest management

The school has recently constructed a number of vegetable gardens and introduced chickens to the school. We would like to prevent any destruction from pests such as noxious weeds, rabbits, snakes, foxes, and rodents. Furthermore, we would like to introduce and encourage beneficial organisms into the garden. We believe our existing gardens and chicken enclosure offer a wonderful learning opportunity to teach all the school children (K-6) about Integrated Pest Management (IPM) - a holistic approach to identifying, monitoring and curbing pest damage. They will learn fundamental principles of IPM such as pest identification, prevention, monitoring, least risk pest control, record keeping and review. We believe that teaching IPM will connect students to nature, teach them how humans can manage their environments sustainably and responsible stewardship.

Bonville Public School
Land to lunchbox garden - relocation and rejuvenation

Our existing school garden has been chosen as the site of a new classroom and it needs to be re-located, re-established and rejuvenated. It is used as a whole of school teaching resource on recycling and living sustainably. The children maintain a worm farm from lunchbox waste, collect seed and grow seedlings, learn about mulch, soil biology, composting, good and bad bugs and for some students ‘tasting a fresh bean for the very first time’. With produce on sale to parents of students on a weekly basis, the new garden will further promote healthy living choices from ‘Land to lunchbox’.

Budawang SSP
The hanging gardens of Budawang

This garden project will be located in a section of the school that is currently not used. It will enhance the appearance of the school from the street and will complement our ‘Live life Well at School’ program. The students will participate in designing, planting, shopping, building, planting and harvesting the garden. The garden will provide a practical foundation from which to conduct a number of programs, including Science, Technology, English, maths and human society and its environment (HSIE). Harvested food can be used in the ‘Crunch n Sip’ program. The local community will be involved in the construction and planting of the garden and already three fathers have offered their support in the maintenance and care of the resource. These men are keen to see the students at our school develop a love of the outdoors and the skills to possibly set up a business or recreation later in life.

Casula High School 
Hands on edible and native garden: Special Education Unit

Casula High School established a special education unit in 2014. The unit consisting of three classes has quickly become a vibrant and energetic part of our school community. The school has a productive farm and environment centre frequently accessed by the mainstream students; however the distance and security reasons make it difficult for students with special needs to access. It is envisaged that this grant would enable the school to transform an unused and secure area adjacent to the support classrooms to create an outdoor learning space and quiet area that would cater for the needs of students

Cooranbong Public School
Growing our future

To create a kitchen garden that will support the Stephanie Alexander kitchen garden program. The garden will demonstrate first-hand how one can reduce their footprint by growing food locally and reduce waste by recycling organic matter, making compost and in turn enhancing food production. The purpose of the project is to arouse a sense of appreciation and respect for the environment within our local community through inquiry-based learning experiences that enhance collaborative learning skills and provide opportunities to deepen student knowledge of sustainability. By incorporating a working greenhouse into our wider gardening program we will allow students to understand and participate in the entire life-cycle of food production as well creating a basis for a small student led enterprise. Chickens will allow students to understand the role that animals play in food production and healthy gardens.

Cundletown Public School
Cundle green thumbs

Cundletown Public School is a mid-sized primary school located in an area north of Taree. It is a small community in a semi-rural setting. The school is presently establishing vegetable gardens that will supply the canteen with healthy eating options. A gardening club with 55 kindergarten to year 6 children actively involved. Senior students have taken on leadership roles in this. The aim is to expand these environmental projects to include a composting area, worm farming, fruit tree planting, mulching of existing garden areas and empowering the children to educate others.

Dunoon Public School
Dunoon school diggers

Within this project Dunoon Public School will develop food gardens enabling students to grow and harvest sustainable food year round within a broader three year kitchen/garden program. Dunoon lies within a productive farming district yet most student food is packaged and highly processed. Supported by local horticultural expertise the project will design, plan and construct six large food garden beds and establish a closed loop system utilising organic waste through composting and worm farming. A key goal is to engage students to participate in the design, planning and development of a creative, integrated food garden that delivers environmentally sustainable outcomes.

Edgeworth Public School
Edgie's veggie garden

We aim to establish a sustainable produce garden, including a vegetable patch, herb garden, fruit trees, bush tucker, compost bins and a worm farm. At Edgeworth Public School there is a high demand to establish a produce garden to further enhance students’ involvement within environmental education.  Our project will provide opportunities for hands-on environmental learning. Members of the whole school community will share in the planting, growing, harvesting and selling of produce.  The environment will benefit from our produce garden through reducing waste products from eating times by contributing the waste to the compost bins. Reusing and recycling materials will be used to construct elements in our garden.

Gorokan High School
Gorokan High School support garden project

The newly developed special education unit at Gorokan High School aims to engage students with disabilities and those disengaged in the learning process with life related skills. As part of this focus on developing independent students ready for post-school, we aim to develop sustainable vegetable gardens in our outdoor learning area. The goal of this space is to provide a cross-curriculum educational approach around the science, personal development, health and physical education, food technology and mathematics areas. The skills gained through this garden project by students with disabilities will include, but are not limited to, learning about life cycle, changing seasonal patterns, healthy eating, food preparation and skills around budgeting, money, time and measurement.  This project will focus on enhancing social skills, team work and the ability to plan into the future - all skills fundamental to post school success.

Greenacre Public School
Worming for food - here and there!

Currently we have a food garden that classes maintain and cultivate to then prepare dishes in the kitchen. We would like to introduce a worm farm that students in the support unit would look after by collecting compost from classes to feed the worms and then use the liquid and solid fertiliser in both the existing food garden as well as a new 'Here and there' food garden. Working closely with an Aboriginal community liaison officer and expert in Asian cooking, these students will learn the history of the local area; explore the selection of bush tucker and Asian plants to plant in their sustainable garden as well as looking after the garden. They will thus be a part of the whole sustainable food cycle as they use the plants in their weekly cooking sessions. Students will develop confidence, ownership and pride as well as increasing their integration with other students and team work skills. These qualities will benefit them for life. The bush tucker garden will be in two locations with a worm farm at each to cater to the support class locations.

Holroyd School
Holroyd School food garden project - grow healthy, be healthy!

All students at Holroyd School have significant intellectual disabilities, and many also have physical disabilities and autism. Our school recently had major building works and some previously existing gardens were demolished. The school garden project will enable our students to engage in across-curriculum lessons about the environment and healthy lifestyle in a practical and meaningful way. Through planning and tending the garden and using the produce in a variety of lessons, our students will be able to learn about and experience environmentally sustainable gardening practices and develop their interest and knowledge about healthy eating and healthy physical activity. Produce from the gardens will be used in cooking and sensory programs, allowing students to touch, taste and smell a range of healthy foods.  The project will provide opportunities for many students who do not have access to gardens at home to learn in a new environment. Our students and their parents will be able to see the positive effect they can have on the environment and on their lifestyle.

Hunter River High School
Our garden project

The aim of our participation in the Food Gardens in Schools program is to assist students in gaining an understanding of the relationship between daily activities and the health of the environment, our impact on the Earth and our need to utilise resources efficiently for them to be sustainable. Through development of teaching programs a school garden will be enormously beneficial in providing increased opportunities for special needs students to achieve outcomes across subject areas in the life skills curriculum. Participation will provide tangible experiences in a high interest physical activity. A garden will make a positive contribution to students developing work skills and enable their transition from school to community. Students will have the opportunity to achieve goals specified in their individual transition plans. Work in a garden and the related activities will address the different learning styles of students, ensure the learning is relevant and promote a transfer of knowledge between school and home and a lifelong interest in gardening.

Iluka Public School
Three 'S':  simple + sustainable = success

The purpose of this project is to establish a bush tucker grove within the newly established food zone area within Iluka Public School. This grant would enable the students, staff and school community to enhance their knowledge about the cultural significance of the local environment for Aboriginal people, to celebrate Aboriginal heritage and gain a deeper knowledge about indigenous foods. Students will learn about the value of bush foods, what is edible and useful about certain bush plants, understand that bush plants were used for medicines, and gain knowledge about the legal and environmental issues associated with collecting bush tucker.

Inner Sydney Montessori School
Wicking worm grow beds

Our Wicking worm grow bed project is one element of a larger project to convert our school grounds into a demonstration/learning living classroom that will showcase how food can be grown in small spaces, transforming a fully paved urban space into a diverse green and healthy community environment.  We need this project because our school currently has almost no green space. We would like our green space to include a food garden because food and meal production is such an important part of our curriculum that almost every classroom has a kitchen. The children participate in meal preparation and allowing them to use fresh seasonal produce will enhance the appreciation of how and when varieties of plants grow in natural conditions.

John Palmer Public School
Sensory organic food garden

The sensory organic food garden will encourage the students with special needs in the Early Intervention class to explore their sensory needs and address their anxiety with touch, taste and smell of different plants in their environment.  The program will allow the students to increase their self-confidence and self-esteem in understanding their personal identity, their place in the school environment and encourages them to work alongside other students in the school.  All the students will learn to make healthy eating choices, understand where their food comes from, with a direct connection to the current Live Life Well at School Policy.

Kadina High School 
Sustainable living, healthy eating

To educate students about the ease of producing healthy and tasty food in a fashion that supports sustainable living. Many of our students are from low socio-economic status and/or Aboriginal backgrounds and do not have access to a healthy diet or a home life that is based on healthy and sustainable living. This project will give students the skills to design and create food gardens that supply nutritious produce, which students will then use to cook healthy meals. A significant portion of our carbon footprint comes from the transportation of goods. Local small scale production reduces our carbon footprint and decreases the need for large monocultures and their associated problems including, for example, the need for the use of pesticides.

Kurrambee School
Participation, engagement and understanding: Kurrambee food garden 

Kurrambee caters to students with varied and significant disabilities. Our project draws together a number of current school environmental programs to help students understand how healthy food is produced sustainably, through programs that are linked to curriculum K-12. In 2014, Kurrambee moved to a new site, which has an existing garden that we will make more productive and accessible to students through development of an accessible orchard. We aim to create an environment that is meaningful and welcoming, catering to the specific learning and participation needs of our students, through creating an Aboriginal food garden and food cycle mural.

Lake Munmorah Public School
Fresh is best

Our school food garden is established within the support unit gardens at our school. The aim of the garden is to not only grow and harvest fruit and vegetables, but to use the garden as a way of teaching science and environmental studies to students with special needs and behaviour difficulties. We also plan on establishing a herb market, with the support of our senior students.  After the establishment of the garden we will be introducing cooking lessons into our curriculum. We have been approached by a local chef who is very keen to be involved.

Manly West Public School
Manly West kitchen garden

The project will provide an organic food growing garden and outdoor classroom, accessible to all students.  The garden program will equip teachers and students with the knowledge and practice to sustainably grow, prepare and eat fresh, healthy and seasonal food both in school and beyond.  In addition it will facilitate integrated teaching across the curriculum. The garden, built over two previously neglected zones, will be planned and built with sustainable environmental organic principles involving students in composting, planting, maintenance, and harvesting in seasonal rotation and will leave them with lifelong garden skills, an understanding of environmental sustainability and positive relationships with fresh healthy food.  The garden will call on the wider school and local community for support and involvement.

Manning Valley Anglican College
Establishment of a food garden - garden to plate

We are seeking to build a food garden at the entrance to our school. All students will walk past the garden each day and will engage with the garden through sight, smell and visual impact. We will have our secondary school art, wood and technology design involved in making murals, archways and colourful insects to place in the garden. Parents will have an opportunity to engage with the garden, we will build the garden over a number of stages and engage with the school community throughout the development. The garden is being established next to the canteen.

Marayong Public School
Chives, chickens and children: an oasis in suburbia

Marayong Public School will:

  • create four large vegetable plots (one for each of the seven support classes at the school)
  • plant, care for and maintain each plot and; harvest, prepare and serve the garden produce
  • maximise educational opportunities and students, staff and parents/caregivers will recognise the benefits of outdoor/environmental experiences
  • encourage our community to grow and produce their own vegetables at home and emphasise the role of fresh vegetables in maintaining a healthy lifestyle
  • create an outdoor environment that will encourage local birds and other small native animals
  • align our activities with the expectations of the new science curriculum
  • align this program with our ‘Living Skills Protocols’

Marks Point Public School
Marks Point market garden

To establish a vegetable garden on the old library area which presents as a vacant place without use and aesthetic appeal to our community. Our garden will turn an eyesore into a productive, student focussed and hands-on learning environment. The garden will use rainwater gathered from a nearby gutter. Our school wants to lower its carbon footprint further by creating both an environmentally and financially sustainable vegetable market garden. Our garden area will create a model for our community, a productive garden that produces ample crops for our canteen as well as to sell produce to the local community and enable cooking activities to eventuate. We use produce funds to keep the garden running. The project will provide life skills in establishing gardens then growing fresh produce for our students. The project will have direct links to various aspects of the curriculum and enable our school to become a model for sustainable living in the community.

Moorefield Girls High School
Promote sustainable and healthy living

Our sustainable food garden will engage students in an appreciation for the importance of living a sustainable and healthy life. It will provide students with a tranquil outdoor learning environment where they can maintain and harvest their own produce. All students will have equal access to enjoy and learn about the environment. This will build an appreciation for local produce and an understanding of food miles in our urban school community.

Murwillumbah Public School
Lettuce grow

The extension of our small veggie garden will support the high levels of interest shown by the students in our current garden club. We aim to build additional garden beds and provide tools and materials for its continued development and maintenance. Our students love to be involved in hands-on learning activities and work in the garden in class groups and small groups. The learning that occurs in our veggie garden links with science, environmental education, English and maths. The opportunities are endless and the learning is invaluable!

Orange High School
Vegetable garden

Students establish class vegetable gardens in corrugated iron containers in order to demonstrate that a large portion of an average family's vegetable requirements can be produced in their own yard.  Recycled kitchen vegetable matter from the home economics department, canteen and poultry manure from the agriculture plot will be composted and used to maintain nutrient levels and reduce water usage.

Queanbeyan West Public School
The not so secret garden

As part of our continued commitment to our students and the local community we would like to establish a no-dig food garden. The not so secret garden will transform a debilitated area of the school playground into a delight for the senses. In the beginning three raised garden beds will be developed to provide students within the support classes an opportunity to grow, harvest, prepare and share their produce. Student participation in the garden will improve social skills and learning outcomes. The garden will be a sanctuary to those students who find the demands of school life too hard.

Rowland Hassall School
From garden to plate

We currently utilise our vegetable garden as a crucial part of our teaching and learning activities. The garden is a hands-on way to engage our students who are more able to achieve learning outcomes in flexible learning environments. The goal we have been working towards is for students to be able to cultivate fresh fruit and vegetables from seed all the way through to maturation so that the produce can be used in our food technology program and our crunch and sip program. In order to achieve this we need to develop a miniature greenhouse to cultivate seedlings and conduct improvements on our existing vegetable garden beds. Our aim is for students to increase their understanding of sustainability through the cultivation and beautification of the school environment.

Sapphire Coast Anglican College
Diggers patch - you can fix the world's problems in a vegie patch

Twenty five percent of students at our small rural school present with special needs. The special education department’s modest, much loved vegie and chook patch can provide only limited space for students in need of positive physical outlet, a break from structured classroom environment, and help in anxiety reduction. The expanded food garden will become a sanctuary, the heart of enrichment, utilised for gardening, socialising, language, mathematics, and science. Students awareness of food values, sustainability and carbon footprint will improve as a result of supplying their kitchen with chemical free produce, increasing carbon storage, and by locating the garden in an area which will reduce run off from a disused road into wetland area.

Shoalhaven High School
School grown vegetables

Garden design will make all aspects of horticulture and olericulture accessible to children with physical impairments such as being wheelchair bound and other mobility issues. It will also serve as a place where children with anxiety and mental health issues may visit as the area is contained within but isolated from an existing school farm environment. The current surroundings are of an agricultural plot where farm animals can be seen from the area designated for this purpose. The garden will allow for living skills to be practiced and all components of horticultural/olericultural enterprise to be explored in a safe, accessible and contained setting.

Southern Cross School
The support centre K-6:  food garden project

The support centre K-6: food garden project will provide an opportunity to develop a food gardening system that educates students with disabilities (six classes of students with disabilities) about the relationship between the environment and clean, healthy food. Once produce is harvested the students can learn how to cook with their fruit and vegetables. The students will learn first-hand about the benefits of recycling organic waste and the skills needed to produce and prepare healthy meals. The project will provide the necessary resources including materials and training to create a fully functioning and sustainable food garden. Activities in the garden will be integrated into the curriculum for mathematics, English, science as well as part of the school's personal development and health program about living a healthy lifestyle. This program will also serve to foster positive relationships between parents, school staff members and community members.

St Ives High School
St Ives High hospitality garden

Building on the success of our new Hospitality Trade Training Centre (TTC), the school is seeking to establish a working food garden designed to raise student awareness of plant growth, food production and the impact of this practice on the environment. Located next to the TTC, the garden will teach students how to sustainably grow, harvest and cook delicious and healthy food. Australia's cultural diversity will be explored through the growing and cooking of Aboriginal bush foods; Asian; Mediterranean and Middle Eastern food representative of the cultural background of the students enrolled at our school. The garden will also provide further learning and sensory opportunities for hearing support unit students by encouraging them to become involved with growing their own food and providing an environment that maximises food production. A bare, post-construction site will be transformed into a sustainable, productive learning area that will be a feature of the TTC and school. This project will be included in a number of teaching programs across the school.

St Joseph The Worker Auburn South
Kitchen garden

At the moment the food garden project we have is in a small area with some vegetables growing. Students are showing enthusiasm and dedication to the project which started last year. We started implementation again this year, from scratch. So far, the broccoli, onions, potato, chilli, capsicum, asparagus, rhubarb, celery, and strawberries are growing very well. Students also require some shelter when maintaining the garden, which at the moment is minimal. Students who are in the garden club meet once a week to look after the garden and never miss a day. Students are always thinking of new ways to grow vegetables and look after the ecosystem.

St Joseph's School Narrandera
Our sustainable garden

Children will understand the use of energy and water to produce food in a sustainable way.  They will understand how biodiversity in nature can assist in providing what we need, by;

  • recognising the garden as a learning experience and a learning tool
  • involving pupils in planning, decision making, organisation and publicity
  • matching garden work and classroom work one for one
  • linking the garden to the school curriculum
  • encouraging observation, experimentation and record keeping
  • learning about healthy eating

St Mary's Primary School Corowa
Sow to sustain

St Mary’s Sow to sustain project aligns with the schools charter priority of sustainability. It will incorporate organic fruit and vegetable gardens and a whole school recycling system.  The garden area will be a centrepiece for cross curriculum outdoor learning with an emphasis on sustainable living with each stage group responsible for a particular area.  Funds will be used to train staff in organic food production, composting and rotational gardening. Members of the Corowa Community Garden are also volunteering to share their time and knowledge with staff and students.  The user-friendly recycling system will enhance efforts being made already to recycle in the school. Children will be responsible for its management with an environment group teaching their peers about recycling and waste reduction strategies.  The Sow to sustain project enhances the schools’ strong resolve to minimise waste and seeks to empower the children to be the drivers of sustainability in their community.

St Patrick's Primary School
St Patrick's kitchen garden

The school is about to relocate to a greenfields site. We had two established garden beds on the current site in 2012. This was part of a year 2 inquiry learning project. It is hoped that the school will be able to establish seven garden beds allowing for the growing of vegetables, herbs and other plants. The current arrangement has enabled some younger classes the opportunity to appreciate how living things grow, explore healthy eating options and look at sustainability. These directly link to personal development, health and physical education, science and technology and human society and its environment units of work. By expanding the number of garden beds, all classes will be able to engage with the project. Produce will be sold to the canteen, staff and students with proceeds used to purchase new plants and materials.

St Raphael’s Catholic School
St Raphael's vegetable garden project

Our school has a small playground area with most of the K-6 playgrounds consisting of bitumen surface. In 2012 a plan was developed with the purpose of making the play areas more injury-free, child-friendly and stimulating. The school's vegetable garden project is part of this overall playground plan. It has these scaffolds: (1) create seven vegetable gardens (one for each K-6 grade); (2) place the vegetable gardens in the student's playgrounds (students can readily see and tend to the vegetables); and (3) provide an aesthetically-pleasing and stimulating environment.

Summerland Christian College
Growing good food

The Growing good food project aims to provide a learning environment for students to develop the interest, knowledge and skills to produce healthy organic food. The focus group will be infants and primary students and the garden will be located in very close proximity to the infants area.  Students and staff have shown an interest in food growing and parents are encouraging us to develop their children's skills and understanding of food growing. Small scale garden projects have been carried out in the past, but this funding will enable the school to establish a more substantial, better coordinated and enduring project, one that will be part of the school programme each year.  This project will make a difference to the environment as it will enable us to recycle organics in the school, provide vegetables for use in the canteen and for class food activities as needed as well as enabling students to graze on fresh vegetables. It will, most importantly, instil life skills which they will carry throughout their lives.

Tallowood School
Tallowood farm and gardens

Tallowood School is a school for students K-12 with moderate to severe intellectual disabilities and physical disabilities.  Our project aims to extend our current vegetable garden to include a farm component consisting initially of chickens.  Students will be engaged in the care and maintenance of the chickens with the eggs being used in a variety of cooking programs across the school. The chickens will allow students to explore the role of animals in food production.  Our current composting system will be expanded to incorporate chicken manure and food scraps to reduce waste and fertilise school fruit and vegetable crops.

Tomaree High School
Support playground food garden

The proposed food garden will complement a small existing set of raised gardens in the support playground area and build on Tomaree High School's participation as a rising star in the Newcastle City Council's Climate Cam Program. The area will consist of raised garden beds, a  worm farm and compost bins and will complement work students carry out weekly at the local Ngioka Horticulture Centre and engage students in classes linked to the curriculum areas of maths, English, science, creative arts and food technology. Mainstream and support students have been actively involved in the planning of this area as part of their learning cycle in the higher school certificate construction course and science junior and senior life skills courses. It is envisaged that greater engagement in the curriculum through the expansion of this facility will enable students with disabilities and students without disabilities to work in partnership for improved environmental and educational outcomes.

Toormina High School
Support village garden

The aim of the project is twofold: (1) develop an outdoor area in which the students can be encouraged to gain opportunities in both practical and educational skills in a calming environment, and (2) educate the students on making good informed nutritional food choices and sharing those choices with families. The development of a vegetable garden from the propagation of plants through to harvesting allows the students opportunities to participate in a variety of activities which they may not have experienced before. The establishment of an outdoor workspace would be created by the making of planter boxes on wheels that could be wheeled into position that was accessible to wheelchair students. These would contain plants which would cater for their sensory needs. Other uses of these boxes would be to create an environment for coffee shop days (a work education incentive) which is open to the community and development of a frog pond which would be integrated into the science curriculum and enhance the overall environment within the garden.

Wentworth Falls Public School
Carrots to catchment management from our organic kitchen garden

Wentworth Falls Public School aims to create an organic kitchen garden, orchard and Aboriginal food garden to enable our students to learn through key areas of the school curriculum, including best practices for growing their own food and how this benefits us, our school, our community and the environment. Students will learn principles of organic recycling and sustainable living. They will learn the importance and techniques of chemical free gardening to protect local flora and fauna, including three endangered species, as all runoff from the school and local properties ends up in local creeks and nearby Blue Mountains National Park.

Woniora Road School
Horticulture program - growing for the future 

The purpose of the project is to expand the existing food garden areas, which in turn will 'soften' the appearance of the school buildings. The goals of the project are to install additional raised food gardens, introduce fruit trees (native and commercial) to attract more native wild life and create working compost and install a water tank.  Students will increase their knowledge on simple, easy to implement sustainable practices including the recycle, reuse and reduce concept.  The project aims to engage students by physical, mental and social means. The project will give the students a sense of belonging and ownership. Students will gain basic construction/gardening skills useful beyond school.  The food garden will be used by all. Foods produced will be used for practical cooking and for personal needs.

Woodenbong Central School
Woodenbong Central School community food garden project

The Woodenbong Central School community food garden aims to provide authentic learning opportunities for our students, staff and community about healthy sustainable living through the development of our project, growing and harvesting food in our garden. Our students need to develop relevant knowledge, positive attitudes and practical skills in developing healthy lifestyles, through active participation in gardening and access to fresh, healthy eating alternatives to reduce obesity, improve long term health outcomes, develop cultural awareness about bush tucker, sustainable living and caring for the environment. By learning how to grow and care for a food garden and using the produce to prepare healthy food, the students will learn life skills that will improve their health and quality of life. The connectedness to the land and culture through indigenous perspectives and caring for the environmental will be significant in students learning, our school and community.

 

Page last updated: 03 February 2015