The Horticulture curriculum aims for the children to learn and appreciate organic gardening skills. They care for a plot of land by improving the soil, making and using compost, planting trees, flowers and bushes, harvesting their produce and weeding. During the winter months the children learn how to winterize the garden and prune trees. The children will also experience a brief introduction to Biodynamic Agriculture, a practice of enlivening the soil that enables the land to sustain itself through time.
In addition to harvesting, planting, saving seeds, and composting, sixth graders learn to make schoolyard salve by crushing, soaking, and melting plaintain and comfrey leaves with beeswax. This soothing remedy is distributed throughout our classrooms to aid childhood scrapes.
Cooking time often follows work time, as students prepare and eat rhubarb pie, sautéed garlic and kale and butternut squash soup, using freshly harvested ingredients. Students also make evergreen wreaths in December, and learn about the science of gardening during the winter.