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Inside Gardening Club
Tell us, what’s the purpose of Gardening Club?
There are three purposes really: firstly we want to fully engage children in growing food and understanding where it comes from; secondly, like the other many clubs at Glemsford, Gardening Club helps to broaden the learning opportunities at our school; and thirdly, we want to provide home-grown food for our school kitchen!
Since Gardening club started back in Easter, what have you covered so far? And what’s the plan for the remaining six weeks of term?
Since we started, we have planted potatoes, tomatoes, courgettes, runner beans, sprouts, chilli peppers and much more! We have also weeded several areas of the school and established new flower beds. One of our plans in the remaining weeks of term is to create from scratch a brand new large flower bed at the front of the school and decorate it with red, white and blue flowers (for the Union flag) to help celebrate the Queen’s 90th birthday.
What’s been the highlight of Gardening Club so far?
That’s easy: watching the excitement and joy on the children’s faces as they see their seeds growing into plants and bearing food. It’s always a miracle!
Talk us through a typical session at gardening club?
It’s a very busy session! We have lots of children doing lots of different jobs: weeding, planting, watering and helping to clear and tidy the school grounds. It’s very rewarding for us all.
Operation Green is a fantastic initiative that everyone in the school is taking part in; it’s great to see the school working towards being more self-sufficient and learning about gardening first hand. How important do you think it is for schools to have the opportunity to learn about gardening and what this offers?
I think this is a fundamental part of learning – growing things and caring for our gardens is not only enjoyable, it ultimately helps the next generation to live more sustainably and to care more for their environment. This is why we not only have a weekly Gardening Club, we also have Gardening on the curriculum for all pupils, using the separate vegetable plots we created for every class.
How long until we are going to see some school grown fruit and veggies being served up in the school kitchen?
We have already done it! The first children in the school to supply food were the Nursery class (Dormice) who supplied a bowl of freshly grown lettuce for the kitchen. Marvellous!