Holy Cross School Box Gardens
Holy Cross School is planning to use the grant funds to build box gardens at the front of the school. The plan is to make multiple box gardens for multiple grades to use and learn. Gardening is a skill that students can learn for the future. This gives them the teaching of independence and the ability to produce and grow their own food. These skills can also help students develop their skills of team work, communication, and working towards a common goal. It can provide a feeling of accomplishment, independence, and connecting to nature. This can also help the students find a new hobby or skill that they enjoy.
Grade 6, 7 and 8 curriculum teaches students about healthy ecosystems. A box garden gives the students an opportunity to see plants grow on a local scale. The students can physically learn about the growth of plants in an ecosystem. By planting multiples species of vegetables and plants, the students can learn about crop rotation. They can learn about an ecosystems with multiple species working together to protect the local ecosystems. We plan to have the box gardens and a larger section of flower beds. The students can help plant the vegetables and plants. We want to introduce the students to plants that have multiple purposes in protecting the local ecosystem from pests.
Physical Education and Health:
Students of all ages learn about healthy eating in the physical education curriculum. Having the students gardening from a young age can help students recognize and identify vegetables. Healthy eating is a huge part of the health section of physical education. Having students work to produce vegetables and learn a skill for the future on how to produce their own vegetables for a low cost.
Building a box garden for each grade connects with the seven sacred teachings of the First Nations. In grade 5-6 of the Manitoba curriculum, Indigenous teachings, ways of life and connection to the land is taught. By passing on knowledge of gardening skills from elders to the youth, it continues the traditional teaching of land-based education. Gardening can help connect the students to the local community. In the grade 7 Manitoba curriculum, the students learn about community and global citizenship. The vegetables produced form the box gardens will be used to donate to the local food banks to help families in the local community that struggle with food availability. Having the student grow and produce the vegetables and then donate their work can help the students see firsthand how even the smallest child in the nation can be a global citizen.
We learnt about crop rotation, ancient crop rotation, soil nutrients, natural ways of regenerating soil, turning soil, how to plant and extract vegetables and fruits. We learned about how plants can regenerate nutrients through crop rotation. We learned about how plants and trees help to prevent flooding. The students researched how to carefully plant trees and how much water can be retained by a tree depending on its type and size. The students researched which types of trees can grow in Manitoba that produce fruits and vegetables that can be collected and donated. Students investigated places on the school grounds where our box gardens could be placed. The students negotiated about which vegetables they would grow in the space and where to place them, based on crop rotation. The students researched local food missions and food banks that they could donate the future produce to. They also located areas including low lying areas where trees could be planted to help with flood prevention.