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Get Dirty With It

GMC is soon going to have a branch in The Garden Stem. What is The Garden Stem you ask? Well, it is "a science-intensive, standards-based curriculum that integrates garden-based learning experiences into lessons designed to teach... students in S.T.E.M. science, technology, engineering, and mathematics" (The Garden Stem 1). I asked Mr. McCaskill a few questions about the school garden in order to understand more.

Q: When is the school garden scheduled to be created?

A: "Mr. Lowman, Mrs. Elliott and I have to complete a 6 week on line course before we can order our raised bed garden kit. This is a program administered through CLEMSON University Extension which strives to get student involved in making healthy food choices and out door to experience the joy of gardening. We are in week 2 of that course... We hope to get some things planted by early March."

Are students going to help with the garden? If so, what classes?

"All teachers are encouraged to use the garden and incorporate it into their curriculum. Mrs Elliott will use it with her PE classes to develop healthy food recipes. Ask Mr. Lowman how he plans to use it. I will use it units on weeds and soil and best method practices for controlling weeds and unwanted insects. Planting and harvesting as well as when to plant what and how as well as water and fertilizer needs."

Why is the garden being created?

"The garden is being created to incorporate outdoor hands on activities into the curriculum."

What kind of plants are going to be planted in the garden?

"We will be planting garden peas, onions, lettuce, carrots, kale, kohlrabi, tomatoes, string beans, squash, [and] cucumber as well as flowers that benefit the garden."

Where will the garden be planted?

"The garden will be planted behind the school."

How will the garden be maintained?

"Students will help maintain the garden."

Is there anything else you would like us to know about the garden?

"We are thankful that the greater Greenville master gardeners funded our kit and will help with advice. CLEMSON Extension is also involved. I hope students will develop a love for gardening and be willing to explore careers in fields related to sustainable."

Happy gardening!