Project description

Procedure

 

1- Research & Preparation


-Establish our vision and set our educational goals
-Conduct the needs and site assessments
-Recruit the garden team

 


2-Design


-Develop a good base map that shows the dimensions and existing conditions of the garden site. A base map is the point from which we are starting, or the original site.
-Use our needs and site analysis information to generate a bubble diagram. A bubble diagram consists of simple circles drawn on a piece of tracing paper that lays on top of our base map. Bubble diagrams help define where the various garden features and area would be located.
-Use the bubble diagram to generate a more refined plan of the garden.
-Get students involved at this phase so they truly feel a sense of ownership.
-Consult with an experienced, reputable contractor about construction methods.
-Research the local landscape materials supplier about costs and specifications.

 


3-Implementation


-Coordinate soil removal, soil preparation, heavy construction, and carpentry tasks through a landscape contractor, or possibly through experienced parents.
-Involve children whenever possible, even with heavier tasks like moving compost and mulch.
-Have the children install the plants, with the exception of large trees.

 


4-Maintenance


-Be creative about addressing follow-up care. Kids will happily weed if the task is proposed as a search and destroy mission for the “weed of the week.” Show everyone the weed of the week and have students see how many they can find.
-Have a regular schedule for maintenance, preferably twice a week, and clearly post the tasks to be done each time.
-Let students help develop a task list. They usually know what needs to be done, and will be more empowered to do the tasks than if they are just told what to do.
-Keep the maintenance slots at set times so volunteers know when they can stop by the garden to help, even if they didn’t sign up.
-Promote the times in a newsletter or in flyers around the neighborhood.
-Make sure maintenance volunteers have access to the right tools for the job, including water.

 

 


Evaluation


-Assess our garden after its first season; what worked well and what needs modification?
-Don’t worry about moving plants to more amenable conditions elsewhere in the garden, or trying new varieties of fruits and vegetables that have better disease resistance.
-Survey the teachers and students; ask what they liked and didn’t like about the garden; discuss the results with the garden team and be open to changes that will help the garden function for the entire school.

 


Sustainability


-After 2-3 seasons, look critically at the issues of sustainability; are features holding up to heavy kid-use? Do certain features or plants need to be replaced? These modifications are all part of a garden evolving, and gardens do evolve over time rather than get created all at once.
-Continue to encourage use of the school garden to the faculty, even if we think they should “know about it by now.” It may not be on the forefront of their minds, or they may be beginning a new unit that has natural connections to the garden that they may not have thought through.
 


Communication


-Reports about garden activities are published in the twinspace
-Presentations reports are sent to the coordinator of the global project : Organic Garden Dream in Taiwan (Mrs Cindea Hung)
-Teachers and students present those reports on line, during videoconferences.
-The Taiwan team is in charge of editing the video of the videoconference
-The French team is in charge of the website http://organic.garden.free.fr/

-The previous Organic Garden Twinspace is at : http://new-twinspace.etwinning.net/web/p31480