Looking for volunteers!

LL@School Volunteer Flyer 2020-21

The Landed Learning program will be starting up again at elementary schools in September and is looking for a few more volunteers to join the fun. The exact format of activities will depend on the Ministry of Ed.’s decision about return levels (due in a week or so), but rest assured, we will be continuing to garden with kids, and would love to have you join us!

Message Vanessa via this page or at vanessa.sparrow@sd47.bc.ca for more information.

Growing spuds in burlap sacks

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The Westview Elementary Landed Learning class have been busy planting seeds and continuing their garden-based learning at home. To support that, and give them something extra fun to do, we sent home potato growing kits in burlap sacks and made a video to help with getting started (featuring Freda the Dog). Check it out!

And if you want to try this at home (it’s easy!), here is our instruction sheet.

Thanks to Mother Nature, and Landed Learning volunteer Tracey Hudson, for generously donating seed potatoes. Thanks also to River City Coffee and 32 Lakes Coffee Roasters for supplying us with burlap sacks.

New activities to go with Growing Kits

How Tall is My Sunflower

Nearly two hundred Growing Kits have been sent home to families in the past two weeks (whew!), which means lots of pea and sunflower seeds are being excitedly planted right about now.

To add to the fun and keep children engaged in the process of observing and learning from their growing seedlings, here are a few activities and resources for you to try out:

1. How Tall is My Sunflower? (all grades): a colourful chart for recording the growth of a sunflower plant once it has emerged from the ground.

2. Sprouting Peas in a Jar  (all grades): a fun and easy way to observe part of a seed and the germination process.

3. Sunflower Facts (all grades): a sheet of interesting facts about sunflowers.

4. My Plant Journal (K-3): a booklet for students to document what is happening to their seedlings.

5. My Pollinator Journal (4-7, from Kids Gardening): an informative and engaging journal for observing and learning about pollinators in the garden

Learning at Home with Food

The Food Literacy Program would like to support teachers, parents and students as much as possible during this period of learning from home. We know you are juggling a lot of things right now, and definitely don’t want to add to the pressure, but we have made a list of seven easy steps to engaging children in food-based learning via cooking and gardening, with links to activities and resources.

We are also providing “growing kits” to each family with elementary school aged children. These consist of a few sunflower and pea seeds, a container filled with potting mix and planting instructions to get started. They can be picked up at schools (contact your teacher or principal to confirm). If you need extra supples, let us know via the Contact page. Stay well and happy planting!

Learning at Home With Food FINAL

Bee Happy Seed Balls!

 

We had so much fun making Bee Happy Seed Balls at our Pollination Station for ECO at Edgehill School today! The theme was “Imagining a Green Future” and we helped students to do that by making lots of wildflower and sunflower seed balls to take back to their schools and plant in special “Wildflower Wild” areas. The idea is to grow flowers for bees and other pollinators, and it doesn’t hurt that they look beautiful too .

Many thanks to wonderful LL volunteers Tracey, Lorraine and Sherry for coming to help out and making it all run smoothly, and to Darlene at Dancing Tree Gallery for donating the clay. And of course, to the fabulous Karin for organizing this inspiring event!

Landed Learning @ School will be running more Bee Happy Seed Ball workshops for schools in March – get in touch if you are interested, and check out the Resources page on this website for info on how to make and grow your own wildflower seed balls.

Upcoming Spring Workshops

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It is hard to believe but it is that time of year again, when seed catalogues arrive and garden planning begins. The Landed Learning @ School Program is excited to offer you and your students a range of tried and tested garden-based learning activities and resources for the spring season. These offer great curriculum connections and are highly engaging for students.

Feb 18, 19 or 20
Planning to Plant (45-60 min in-class activity)
* Plan what to plant in the school garden, using specially developed worksheets for the Powell River region
* Plant seeds in home-made paper pots to observe and care for (can be taken home or planted in the school garden)
* Optional add-on: Mindful Tasting exercise, where students sample and rate an assortment of vegetables that can be grown at school, some of which they may never have tried before!

Mar 3, 4 or 5​
Making Bee Happy Seed Balls (45-60 min in-class activity)
* Learn about the importance of pollinators and ways we can attract them to our gardens
*Make seeds balls using a mix of insect-friendly flower seeds to plant at school or home
* Optional add-on: make a Bee Watering Station to go in the garden (outdoors)​

Mar 31, Apr 1 or 2
Caring for Living Things (45-60 min outdoor activity)
* Learn about what seedlings need to survive and how to plant for maximum success
* Transplant seedlings (supplied if necessary) into the garden
* Direct sow lettuce and other seeds that will be ready to harvest for a Celebration Salad before summer break!

Each activity is seasonally-based and available on three dates. You can choose to do one (e.g., Planning to Plant on Feb 20), or all three (e.g. Feb 20, followed by Seed Balls on Mar 3 and Living Things on Apr 2). All materials and post-activity resources are supplied. You just need to book a time for us to come!

Contact Vanessa at vanessa.sparrow@sd47.bc.ca

Landed Learning @ Westview kicks off!

We had a wonderful first day for Landed Learning at Westview School last week (and are thankful that the sun shone to help us get into the swing of things!)

The morning was all about curiosity and observation, and so our activities focused on identifying plants in the garden and mindful tasting of veggies in the kitchen. This was the first time that Garden Friends and students met, and it was pretty impressive how quickly they took to each other!

We are going to have a lot of fun this year…

Welcome back!

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Landed Learning volunteers chat with teachers and Farmer Aaron over lunch in the garden at Westview School

A few updates for you to start the year:

  1. The Grants page has been updated. There are some great funding opportunities either available now or opening soon. Please contact me if you would like any help with these.
  2. The 2019-20 Landed Learning program is ready for launch! All elementary schools are being offered a Garden-based Learning Resource Package  to support them with using school gardens to provide hands-on, cross-curricular learning. There is no cost to schools, and activities can be tailored to suit specific interests and needs.
  3. We have had a fantastic response to our call-out for volunteers for the LL program taking place at Westview Elementary. On August 27, 12 volunteers got together with program staff, teachers and a local farmer to enjoy lunch in the school garden and get to know each other. It’s a great group and we’re really excited to be working with them! If you are interested in participating, we have room for 1 or 2 more…please contact Vanessa Sparrow at: vanessa.sparrow@sd47.bc.ca for details.

 

Help our kids to grow!

intergenerational gardening at UBC

Be part of an exciting new hands-on food literacy program for Powell River elementary students!

LandedLearning@School is a garden-based, immersive education program that will be starting in September, 2019.

LL@School works by partnering adults of all ages – known as Garden Friends – with small groups of Grade 4 and 5 students, who then grow, harvest, prepare and eat food together at school. Children get to learn food growing and cooking skills, and experience teamwork and a sense of stewardship, all while having fun and exploring in the garden.

Twelve seasonally-based morning sessions take place over the school year (usually two a month), including two at a local farm, culminating in a celebratory harvest meal of foods grown and prepared together.

We are currently looking for volunteer Garden Friends to work with students at Westview Elementary, on twelve Wednesday or Thursday mornings, starting late September (exact dates are still to be finalized with teachers). While gardening experience is a great asset, it is not required; the most important attributes for Garden Friends are a sense of enthusiasm for and commitment to teaming up with kids in an outdoor setting. As well as people able to commit to all twelve program days, we are also looking for some folk who can fill in where needed.

Making sure volunteers are well-supported and also having fun is a key feature of this program! Training is provided (a half-day session in mid-September) and each program day includes opportunities for volunteers to talk about their experiences, ask questions and give feedback. As with any school program, a free Criminal Record Check needs to be successfully completed in order to participate.

If this sounds like something you’d like to do, or if you have any questions, we’d love to hear from you! Contact Vanessa at: vanessa.sparrow@sd47.bc.ca or on 604-414-7437.

Spring workshops in full swing

If you are hoping to plant veggies in your school garden that can be harvested by summer break but think you’ve run out of time: fear not! There is still a window for planting lettuce, radishes, peas and even nasturtiums – enough for a tasty harvest salad in the last week of school. And of course microgreens can be started anytime and will be ready to nibble in a week or so…kids really do love these.

The last frost date in our area is typically around April 25, meaning that this is a good time to direct sow seeds outdoors. I have some great lesson plans and ideas for garden planning and planting, so let me know if you’d like me to come and work with you and your class. I provide supplies and sessions are around 1-2 hours, depending on the grade level and what you’d like to achieve.

Here are some pics from recent workshops at Henderson and Kelly Creek schools.

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