Warrawong PS Vegetable Garden

vege1 Cauliflowers and broccoli as big as basketballs may be some kids worst nightmares, but not the green-fingered garden crew at Warrawong Primary. Students from K-6 have been exploring the bountiful and beautiful Permaculture garden at their school, getting their hands in the soil, harvesting the produce and even selling it to staff and parents. This diverse 600m2 garden had become overgrown and weed infested, so the students have been investigating methods of weed removal, pruning techniques, appropriate planting and harvesting. At the end of each session, something is picked and shared amongst the class, who have delighted in mandarins, oranges, pomegranate, panama berries and ice-cream beans over the winter months. Students from the support unit also harvest the vegetables grown and learn how to cook with them. Bountiful broccoli has resulted in ‘Shrek Soup’ and similarly cauliflower has created ‘Snow White Soup’. Herbs are picked and added to dishes or sold to teachers when they are in abundance – which seems to be most of the time in this wonderfully productive garden. During the warmer months when things are really growing fast, support unit students make lists of what is available in the garden, take orders from teachers, manage money and sell surplus to parents at a stand in the playground. They are learning valuable life skills and they absolutely love it! The garden is becoming a key part of a student’s experiential learning at Warrawong Primary and judging by the smiling faces, enthusiasm to help and excellent results, it is also one of their favourite aspects of school life.