School Garden Initiative (SGI)
The School Garden Initiative responds to the need for hands-on educational opportunities in schools, a gardening and nutrition connection for children and locally grown food for the community. The goal of the initiative is to support a network of school gardens functioning as experiential learning environments for teachers and students during the school year and as food production gardens - maintained by middle and high school students - during the summer months as part of the Engaging Alaska Teens in Gardening (EATinG) program.
Calypso plays a lead role in the initiative by caring for the gardens during the summer, consulting on garden design and development, supporting teachers in using the gardens and maintaining a network of communication between schools.
- Chinook Montessori Charter School
- Hunter Elementary School
- Pearl Creek Elementary Schools
- Randy Smith Middle School
- University Park Elementary School
- Woodriver Elementary School
If you are a local business or organization and are interested in sponsoring one of the school gardens, click here for sponsorship info.
SGI 2012 Successes
- Chinook Montessori Charter School planted their garden for the first year. We grew peas, potatoes, flowers, lettuce and bunching onions!
- 1,537 students came out into the garden for 159 lessons led by Calypso staff members
- During the summer and fall, EATinG students and Calypso staff ran 42 farm stands selling school garden grown vegetables to the community
- 33 teachers brought their students into the garden on their own!
- 65 student gardeners took care of three of the school gardens throughout the summer
- With the help from a grant through the Food Bank, we were able to double $1,500 in WIC Vouchers, sending low-income mothers home with double the fresh vegetables!
- Student gardeners learned how to prepare the vegetables they were growing in a series of outdoor cooking lessons using food straight from the garden!
- Student gardeners worked with chefs in 8 local restaurants and, using garden vegetables, prepared delicious dishes for the annual EATinG Celebration
If you have questions or are interested in learning more about the Schoolyard Garden Initiative, contact Sarah Furman at 907-451-0691 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Living Classroom Manual
This manual, based in Alaska state standards, seeks to inspire teachers and students to learn experientially in the school garden and natural world through the process of active participation and direct observation. In essence, The Living Classroom Manual seeks to provide teachers with the information and resources to take children outside and to be academically productive at the same time.
If you are interested in purchasing a copy of the Living Classroom Manual, please contact Calypso. The Manual costs $30 plus $5 shipping if necessary, but is free for Fairbanks North Star Borough Teachers.