As a Master Gardener I have the distinct privilege of teaching children about gardening through the Junior Master Gardener program. I have two groups of 3rd graders (at a Title I school) that I teach (in a volunteer capacity...I am not a teacher by profession) every week as part of their curriculum. I weave in science, math, art, nutrition and life skills into the gardening lessons. Periodically, I also teach groups of children about 'gardening for pollinators' at a local educational garden supported by my Master Gardener group and I go into other area schools to speak about gardening.
This week I spoke to a group of 2nd graders about gardening with a focus on color and texture in the landscape. It was tied to a book they just finished reading called The Chalk Box Kid where the main character of the story creates an imaginary garden.
To complete the gardening lesson and tie it in with art and creative thinking I planned a hands on project using color. They used Q-tips with paint to create a colorful tree and other plants and insects they may find in nature.
I am so thankful to have the opportunity to pass along my passion for gardening and the environment through my volunteer work. My hope is to create an interest in gardening, appreciation and respect for the environment with these children. If one child grows up to be a gardener I have accomplished my goal.