Sunshine, paint, kindergarten, & Sylvia’s spinach

color!

color!

A parent donated many milk cartons recently because they dropped out of the milk carton derby race on Greenlake. These are a great reusable & recyclable resource to use for plant transplanting cups. We are gonna put some tomatoes in them next week.

painting

painting

So we set some tables outside w/ much tempera paint and got to painting in this glorious sunshine. Art & gardening outside- yes!

But first we read the great book- Sylvia’s Spinach.

book-sylvia-cover

This story tells of a student who dislikes spinach but after her class plants a garden, she grows some, and loves it! This could be any kindergartener’s story here. So after we read the story, we broke open some packs of spinach seeds and got to planting. After Sylvia grew spinach from seed, she appreciated it more. Could we be so lucky here at Orca? Maybe!

spinach seeds

spinach seeds

We also got the opportunity to paint some rocks in the garden too- these colorful additions provide a visible reminder not to step on the garden beds.

Precision painting

Precision painting

It was truly an amazing & interactive day in the garden on an incredible Spring day. We were even able to plant some kale starts that we grew from seed too.

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Spring & the wonder of it all…

The fun

The fun

Sometimes you gotta sit back and realize what an amazing program this is- hands on, experiential education & student engagement of the natural world. Experiential learning is the process of learning through experience, and is more specifically defined as “learning through reflection on doing”.

The dirt

The dirt

To see these kids faces when they come outside away from the florescent lights of the classroom- they are ready to breathe fresh air and of course get their hands incredibly dirty doing amazing work. We have transplanted over 1000 tomatoes in the last week, with more to come. I constantly remind the students that their hard work is gonna fill gardens around Seattle with fresh, local, and organic food. I can see the pride on their faces…

The pride

The pride

We planted starts in the garden that we grew in the greenhouse- lots of kales, greens, chard, and salad mix. We are all having visions of spring- a fever is in the air. Lets get to growin’!

The joy

The joy

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Orca Cooking Club fundraiser!

Please support this amazing fundraiser for our friends Rainier Valley Foodbank by the Orca 8th graders! Tamara Guyton has been an active parent volunteer and awesome community member who does incredible cooking workshops & classes with students through the Orca Cooking Club. They will be using collard greens and chard from the garden!

Chef Tamara Guyton harvests greens

Chef Tamara Guyton harvests greens

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Tuesday, March 31st
6:30-8:30
Lakewood Seward Park Community Center
4916 S. Angeline Street
$10 pre-pay/$12 at the door
Under 3 years: free/Under 12 years: $5
Buy your tickets here: http://orcacookingclub.weebly.com/

Seating is limited to 60 people! Buy your tickets now!

The menu features comfort food: Adobo Chicken, Cornbread/Mashed Potato Muffins, Pasta with Roasted Vegetables, Texas Caviar, Tangy Orca Slaw, & Pineapple/Berry Upside-Down Cake. The menu is based on recipes that the students shared and we will focus on using local vendors to gather as many of the ingredients as possible.

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What is organic?

When we were studying local vs. conventional food, it was a common misconception that local means organic. Anyone could spray chemicals/pesticides/fertilizers on their own local food garden. So we thought it would be important to be clear about exactly what organic is and what it does to soil. We used the fabulous Worms Eat Our Garbage classroom activities book to help us out. It has fun activities and the sheet we used really generated some good discussions and deeper understanding. Since the 5th graders are studying micro-worlds for their science unit, this was a nice garden connection.

What is organic?

What is organic?

It’s important to add another layer of depth to this discussion by getting into the soil, turning it over, and using some elbow grease to see, experience, and feel that organic Orca soil. Read this amazing article about the mind altering effects of soil on and in the human body.

Checkin' out the healthiness

Checkin’ out the healthiness

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Study how a plant grows- then take it home!

Recording data

Recording data

3rd grade will be studying plant growth for their next science unit. We thought it would be great to have them plant a tomato seed, transplant the lil’ seedling, then monitor and watch it’s growth. They have been recording the data on the side of their 4″ pot. The coolest part may be that they will then take the plant home and hopefully enjoying the “fruits” of their labor. Unlike the classroom science kit for growing plants- this gives them a chance to enjoy the delicious part of the growing of plants.

Measurement master

Measurement master

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Spring is nature’s way of saying, “Let’s party!”- Robin Williams

Art & Garden

Art & Garden

How about this incredible springtime sunshine out here? The primary grades K-2 have been exploring the garden and discovering the first signs of spring.

Yes, we have fun out here too.

Yes, we have fun out here too.

To be outside, connect w/ nature, get artistic- these are what we pride ourselves on in the Orca garden. Garden education is above all about appreciation for the natural world. In a way we all become dormant in the winter and then emerge into the garden with excitement and wonder.

Lovely currant bush.

Lovely currant bush.

So we explored the first signs of spring w/ clipboards and pencils- then shaded them in w/ colored pencils. This kind of activity allows a freedom to explore what interests the child- a rare opportunity in public education for a kid to choose their own path and wander- without being lost.

Color.

Color.

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Orca Plant Sale May 9, 2015 !!!!!!!

The amazing Orca Plant Sale is back on May 9th, 2015 10am-3pm at Orca K-8 School . RSVP at our facebook event page. Share with everyone please!

Yay!

Yay!

We promise a great assortment of plants, shrubs, berries, natives, and more. We of course are doing a lot of growing here, but will have some incredible partnerships in our community to bring you everything your garden needs.

Cascadian Edible Landscapes
Go Natives Nursery
Rosebriar Garden
Readers To Eaters Books
and more!

All great food has a small beginning.

All great food has a small beginning.

Waiting to be placed in your garden.

Waiting to be placed in your garden.

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