Since 2012 School Garden Project has been developing, implementing, and improving the quality of garden based Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education. Through partnerships with Eugene 4J school district, the City of Eugene, and the many donors who support our programs, we have been able to continuously create, implement, and improve STEM units designed for garden centered education in the STEM fields.
Each year, School Garden Project educators serve hundreds of 1st-8th grade students through this program. Through hands on, project based learning opportunities, arts and technology enriched lessons, and the opportunity to work in their own living laboratory, students are increasing their affinity for core STEM disciplines as well as healthy eating practices.
STEM in the Garden Curriculum
Our STEM in the Garden curriculum has been implemented, revised, and further developed since 2012. The curriculum is comprised of a series of 6 Modules which can stand alone or be taught over the course of a school year. The order of the modules loosely follows the growing season/school year. Each of these modules is aligned to grade-level Next Generation Science Standards and the Common Core and comes complete with comprehensive lesson plans, materials prep, and supporting games and activities
School gardens serve as a living laboratory to explore the world of earth and life sciences. Teeming with possibilities, school gardens provide students with the opportunity to conduct experiments, view seasonal and land-form changes, take population surveys, and watch life cycles unfold before their eyes.
School gardens provide students with opportunities to design, build, and re-imagine the world around them. From garden planning and installation, to pea trellises and bio-mimicry projects, students utilize the space and resources around them to create, test, and improve upon designs.
Integrating technology into garden education increases student engagement and participation. Application of technological resources is an invaluable way for students to document their findings, express their thoughts and ideas, and get up close and personal with the microcosm of life which flourishes out of the eye’s view.
From counting in first grade through calculating volume, area, and mass; gardens provide students with the opportunity to work hands-on with their curriculum and apply their knowledge to real world problems. How many pumpkins can grow in a 3ft x 8ft garden bed? Lets find out!