Grow Eat Learn Guiding Practice:

Connect with Nature


Connect with Nature

School food gardens help us to deepen our appreciation and understanding of our physical, emotional, and spiritual connections with nature. School food gardens promote cooperative learning and stimulate students’ curiosity about the natural world, helping them to become stewards for whole and healthy ecosystems and the people that live in them. Additionally, participation in outdoor and garden activities have been shown to contribute to cognitive development, psychological growth and social skill learning, positively affecting physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health.


Resources for Connect with Nature

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 Curriculum Connection

Exploring Ecosystems: Foster care and understanding of garden ecology.Have students explore, describe and report on biotic factors and conditions for growth. Gardens provide an opportunity to study structures and interactions in a natural system.

Nurturing Exploration in Nature: Many poets and writers draw inspiration from nature, as can students. Provide opportunities for reading and creative writing in the garden, or bring the garden to the classroom! Through classic and contemporary literature, students can explore themes of the natural world and be encouraged to reflect, meditate and nurture their own spirituality and creative potential.

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Story from the Field: Connect with Community

The vegetable beds at our school are a great addition to the natural playground. The students get to see the connections between the growing, harvesting, and eating firsthand. It becomes part of their daily experience-right at our backdoor! The students’ hands-on contributions inspire their ownership of the project. The connection between the community kitchen at our school and the garden creates a positive synergy that is rooted in stewardship-taking care of ourselves, taking care of others and taking care of the world.- Principal

Explore other Guiding Practices


Plan, Evaluate and Share

Learn in the Garden

Co-create Welcoming and Inclusive Spaces

Strengthen the School Community

Create a Safe Environment

Sustaining School Food Gardens