Sunday, 15 April 2012

Community Service Learning in the Garden- thanks Tia & Kailee!

Tia cleans lettuce seed

Kailee washes salad greens

As the term comes to a close we'd like to appreciate Tia & Kailee for their work in and contributions towards The Orchard Garden.  Tia (a masters student in Education) and Kailee (an undergraduate student in Land & Food Systems) contributed 20 hours (each) of Community Service Learning (CSL) via their class, EDCP 585C- Theory and Dimensions of Place-based Learning: Ecohumanist, Critical and Indigenous Lenses. 
From January-April, Tia & Kailee attended several of our meetings- contributing ideas and questions, researched the uses and growing needs of native plants (to hopefully be planted this spring!), Tia contributed to this blog, Kailee helped to lead a workshop, and both Tia & Kailee  put in many hours doing hands-on garden work.

For the culmination of their work Tia & Kailee created a presentation and handout to synthesize their CSL placement with us.  Here are a few excerpts of their learning outcomes and perspectives:

"The first time we met our partners at the Orchard Garden was on a rainy, cold day in January. The garden had been put to bed for the winter, and there really wasn’t much to be done outside during the winter months. We stood out in the rain and had a brief look at where we imagined we would be spending a great deal of time in the spring."  

Over the course of the term, Tia & Kailee did spend a great deal of time on-site, which to them became the most meaningful part of the experience as they felt a sense of connection to this garden.  Here are some of their individual perspectives as to how this experience will impact their future:
  • ¨"Understanding the complexity of planning and maintaining a garden for teaching purposes
  • ¨Gained experience teaching and learning with other volunteers
  • ¨Many questions to consider for Community Engagement Project I need to develop for a course this summer"
  • ¨"Using new garden knowledge and skills in a school setting
  • ¨Enhanced understanding of where food comes from and how it is grown and harvested
  • ¨Feeling more comfortable with the idea of volunteering with projects where I have little experience
  • ¨Inspired to learn more about learning gardens in schools and apply research findings to graduating project"
Thanks Tia & Kailee!  We hope you will visit us in the garden soon and we look forward to your future endeavors around teaching and agriculture. 

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