Garden School Foundation Inc
Pasadena, California, USA
MissionGarden School Foundation provides in-depth garden-based education to youth at Title I schools in Los Angeles, strengthening connections between food justice, environmental awareness, and community health in historically underserved neighborhoods. By using the full transformative potential of school gardens as teaching sites, we nurture a healthy and mindful generation of children that care for their bodies, their communities, and the earth. We currently serve eight Title I elementary schools, reaching over 3,000 students and their families each year.
What We DoRecognizing that education, poverty, food justice, and health are deeply linked, our Seed to Table program of hands-on, garden-based education is designed to maximize the transformative potential of school gardens. We serve students from Kinder through 5th grade in a year-round program that is much more in-depth than most school garden offerings. Designed to engage a child over the entire course of six years of elementary school, our Standards-aligned lessons bring academic concepts to life through real-world, outdoor experiences. The program encourages exploration, critical thinking, and teamwork as children learn how to collaboratively grow, harvest, cook, and eat their own healthy foods, as well as how they can impact both the broader environment and their own communities.
Students visit the garden during the school day every other week, alternating between science-based gardening and nutritional cooking classes. These learning experiences extend to students' families and the surrounding community through monthly Community Garden Days and other events. At each school site, classes are led by a trained GSF Garden Educator who maintains the garden as a living laboratory, works with classroom teachers to complement their instruction, conducts outreach to the school community and broader neighborhood, coordinates garden volunteers, and facilitates extended learning opportunities, including after school clubs and weekend community garden workdays.