Classes at Saint Catherine School are enjoying harvest time in their school garden. Each class has a raised bed area where flowers, fruits and vegetables are planted. Over the past few weeks, classes have harvested potatoes, gourds, tomatoes, squash, cucumbers and peppers. Some of the produce is used in class cooking projects. Students and teachers also take some items home for their families. Additional items are sent to Reach Out, a food pantry on parish property.
Besides enjoying the delicious vegetables and beautiful flowers, students learn how various plants grow and how they have adapted over time. They measure and compare seeds planted to produce harvested. Some classes share their bounty with their class buddies.
Kindergartners grew beautiful flowers which they picked and then described in their journals. First graders looked forward to yummy watermelons that were devoured by critters. Instead they picked gourds which they used as part of a lesson on adjectives. Second graders grew summer and winter squashes and compared how they are different. Third graders dug up a ton of potatoes. Fourth graders pulled sunflower seeds from giant sunflowers. Fifth grade will harvest peanuts in late October. Sixth graders will pick and shuck ears of popcorn and have a popcorn party. Seventh and eighth graders hope to make some delicious salsa before the tomatoes and peppers are finished.
The garden doesn’t end with autumn. Second graders will soon be planting wheat for a late spring harvest. First graders will plant tulips and daffodils. Fourth graders will be planting cabbage and hope to make their own sauerkraut in a few months. Third graders will plant a variety of root vegetables and compare how they grow. And kindergartners have already planted green beans which they hope to harvest in time for their Thanksgiving feast with their eighth grade buddies.