SCHOOL GARDENS PROGRAM
The Explore Ecology School Gardens Program connects children to nature and teaches them how to grow their own organic food using the garden as an outdoor classroom.
Growing Healthy Minds, Bodies, and Little Green Thumbs
Our Garden Educators teach children how to grow food in elementary schools throughout Santa Barbara County. Using the garden as an outdoor classroom, students learn about Planting, Cultivating, Harvesting, Composting, and Nutrition. Students in our School Gardens Program grow organic vegetables, healthy bodies, and lasting friendships.
Research shows that children who grow their own food tend to eat more fruits and vegetables, have a greater understanding of ecology, and receive higher test scores in science. For over 25 years, Explore Ecology has been a vital force for garden education, providing schools and youth groups with on-site gardening and composting lessons, teacher trainings, garden consultations, and Garden Curriculum.
Contact Alex for more information.
List of Schools
- Carpinteria Family School
- Adelante Charter
- SB Community Academy
- La Colina
- La Cumbre
- El Camino
- Goleta Family School
- Isla Vista
- La Patera
- Mountain View
- Santa Ynez Valley Charter School
- Santa Ynez Elementary
- Los Olivos
- Oak Valley
- La Honda
- La Canada
- Montecito Union
- Our Lady of Mount Carmel
We offer volunteer work parties throughout the year at our participating school gardens in Santa Barbara County. We also need volunteers to adopt a school garden in the summer to make sure that our gardens continue to grow when school is out.
Explore Ecology’s School Gardens Program connects children to nature and teaches them how to grow their own organic food. Using the garden as an outdoor classroom, the School Gardens Program serves over 10,000 students per year at 30 local public elementary schools in seven school districts throughout Santa Barbara County.
Stories From the Garden
Welcome to Stories from the Garden, our new series of posts highlighting stories from Explore Ecology Garden Educators who work with children in 35 school gardens throughout Santa Barbara County. Every school day, our educators connect children to nature and teach them how to grow organic food using the garden as an outdoor classroom.
This post comes from Bennett Rock.
One day there was a shrill of excitement near the school garden orchard. A third grade student had discovered a monarch butterfly chrysalis hanging underneath the Fuyu Persimmon sign. The news spread faster than a baseball could be thrown. Soon a swarm of students were on the scene, howling with “oohh’s” and “aahh’s” of curiosity. It seemed to take every ounce of effort for them to not touch the delicate chrysalis. The students had just covered the stages of metamorphosis in science class and I was thrilled about the timing. At the same time, I questioned the fate of the pupa being so exposed and having so many anxious youngsters fighting back their curiosity and temptation. All the kids all knew about it and I was surprised each week to see it still hanging there.
TAKE A LOOK!
Watch our video about our School Gardens Program.