Coulson Community Garden
We are a brand new school in Milton. Families need a way to become connected to each other and to their new neighbourhood. The students, educators, and community members will be returning a small portion of our land back to its agricultural roots by creating an organic food garden. This project will draw on our knowledge of food-growing from a variety of cultural backgrounds, and it will help to break down and eliminate barriers created by language, background, age, or socio-economic status. To address issues of nature deficit disorder and lack of connection to the land, the garden will provide an opportunity for our students to discover where food comes from, raise their environmental awareness, learn their curriculum in a hands-on way, and feel connected to their local land. The garden will also feature a “Three-Sisters” section to honour and learn about our First Nations communities and traditions.
Student involvement and engagement in this project is extremely important. As a way to start to raise awareness about the garden, our grade 7s will do an inquiry project to find out how to plan a food garden, what kinds of fruits, vegetables, and herbs the students would like to grow, and how to involve the greater community. We will go through all of the planning stages with a team of students, high school students, educators, and community members. The garden will be built (raised beds) on a Saturday by community members and planted by each class in the school. Students will tend to the garden throughout the year and families will help tend to the garden over the summer months. It will be growing a variety of peppers and tomatoes, lettuce, Swiss chard, kale, strawberries, onions, spinach, pumpkins, sunflowers, zucchini, Indian karela, eggplant, basil and nasturtiums. Teachers will be taking their students to the garden to learn, and families will visit the garden to explore. Chefs will be coming in to help students cook with our produce. It will come full circle with prepping, planting, harvesting, and sharing the harvest at our community BBQ. Our project will be shared with the community. It will be shared by social media (twitter, school website etc.).