"This is like a class room without a roof" said Timmy to his gardenclub classmate one afternoon in the garden. That was the moment that I realised that what we were doing, a garden club for kids just once a week for a month, was making a difference. The seed had been planted.
Under the guidance and assistance of Lisa Frendo, from Three little Pigs, The Veg Box team was happy to welcome 10 kids ages 6 to 10 for a weekly gardening club. Together with another conscious organisation such as Three Little Pigs we were able to give young fertile minds the opportunity to experience a couple of hours in a magical garden where they could express themselves and be in direct contact with nature.
We planted seeds, seedlings and trees into the ground and watched them grow through the four weeks. There is a saying which goes " why explain a miracle to kids when you can have them plant a garden" and that is exactly it. The miracle of life from seed to plant, from flower to fruit and fruit to food is like magic and I know that the kids went home after each session with a heart full of love and a sense of the magic that life really is.
The shyer kids looked for treasures by digging in the soil with the gardening tools provided by Three Little Pigs. Others watered the plants in groups, whilst some enjoyed talking about the plants and seeds that they have grown or shared their other garden stories. All of these were ways of self expression with no rules, which is something that kids resonate with and allows them the freedom to be themselves.
More than teaching them how to tend to a garden, the sessions were more about tending to life in general, our friends, family, pets, plants and all living things. It was about appreciating our environment and all the blessings that we have. Love and respect for each other and everything we do. From planting the seed, to watering the avocado plant, to speaking gently with our classmates.
The week the sessions ended, the scene at the garden gates was of hugs, kisses, cuddles, smiles and cries. There was a sense of sadness that the next week we wouldn't meet again, but knowing that once the cooler weather sets-in in October we may gather weekly and enjoy the beauty of tending to the garden together again.
I want to take this opportunity to thank the mummies and daddies who brought their children to the club and encouraged this form of learning. We, at The Veg Box and Three Little Pigs, love what we do, and passing knowledge to children and their mummies is part of our job. Thank you also to Anita and Zoe for their dedication and time and for being part of the team. And finally thank you to Lisa for her trust and encouragement.
I would like to encourage all parents to spend time in a garden, or tend to a windowsill plant with their kids. Safe child friendly gardening tools are available at Three Little Pigs and great toys for learning through doing.
Here is a link which to an interesting article.
Looking forward to more learning through gardening Autumn.