The Garden to Table programme at Edendale helps our tamariki to build life skills necessary to become lifelong learners through highly practical, hands-on activities. Our young learners not only learn to grow, harvest, prepare and share their kai with their peers but also build awareness of individual and collective responsibility for the environment, healthy eating and community connectedness.
To provide all-round learning experiences when children are exploring the current online and offline learning tools to stay connected to their learning please find following some Garden to Table activities for you to explore at home with your children.
Kylie and Sonia introduce our children to the pleasures of preparing, cooking and eating a variety of foods they have grown themselves via the Garden to Table Programme. They are supported by class teachers and volunteers.
Children are involved in growing and caring for their food from seed to harvest. If we look after our plants, the plants will look after us by providing food. We encourage the children to try new experiences, use all of their senses and work as part of a team. They may get their hands dirty, draw and label a plant, smell some herbs and make sculptures for gardens.
We care for our environment by recycling and reusing where possible. Our compost heap and worm farm are very productive providing food for our next crop of vegetables and fruit. We have reused old bottle tops for art and sculpture, we also reuse pots for planting old paint buckets for carrying weeds etc. to the compost. We use hands-on, fun, practical learning that is integrated into the school curriculum e.g. literacy, maths, science and physical activity.
We learn about seasons, plant parts and their functions, the weather and patience; it takes a long time to grow our food! The enthusiasm is catching, teachers, children and volunteers love the sense of accomplishment they get from watching our gardens grow and produce. They then harvest carrots, beans, tomatoes and many other fruits, vegetables and herbs, bringing them to the kitchen to prepare delicious meals to share with their classmates.
Our school's Kaitiaki team also help in our gardens by regularly assisting with composting and sorting our green waste.