Gardening With Science And Technology
HOW I T WORKS
Gardening With Science And Technology familiarizes students with the science of
planting, with many school subjects utilized. The
program integrates new media, learning standards,
and various subject areas in a hands-on
experience in developing and implementing a school
garden. The students draw upon their
classroom experiences to assist them in this project.
The main activities consist of research,
discussion, computer word processing, planting, and
recording the information gathered.
The students place seeds into seed racks, measure time and growth, and make graphs
on the computer charting this growth. They read
pertinent materials, write reports and narratives,
and discuss observations and presentations.
They study plant life, cell structure, and
beneficial insects, as well as nutrients, soil, pollution,
the greenhouse effect, and weather patterns.
This program is implemented through a series of math and science lessons,
presentations by overhead projector, and research on
the Internet. Students gain technical
competency that is modeled by school staff.
This is a well-rounded program, moving from
the abstract to concrete with hands-on
activities. The students are comfortable working in
pairs and teams, and teach/supervise one another on a regular basis. The
teacher acts as the ‘guide on the side’ and moves about the
room, ensuring that the class is on task and
assisting as necessary. Class time and
instruction are divided between lectures, student
presentations, research, recording findings on the
computer, digital camera photography, and class discussions.
Up to 50 children are participating in this
program. These are special education students
ranging from grades 5-8, mostly from
self-contained classes. They meet in the classroom and
computer lab, as well as in the garden. The
classrooms are equipped with computers. Collaboration with Mr. Honigsfeld, our social
worker, emphasizes teamwork and social skills.
Students have the opportunity to learn key-boarding
skills for this program with the Mavis Beacon
Deborah Perri is a special education teacher
with three years of experience. Her colleague,
Howard Honigsfeld, is a social worker with
five years of teaching experience and five years as
a school social worker.
WHAT YOU NEED
Gardening and growing equipment is
necessary for this program. This includes a lighted
growing rack, seeds, starter mixture, growth
trays, and gardening tools. A microscope is
used to observe cell structure, and digital
cameras provide pictures of the students’ work.
Computers are used for research and recording
Gardening With Science and Technology puts
math and science into a perspective these
children have never experienced. Students gain
hands-on experience, work cooperatively in an
applied learning environment, and cover at least
five subject areas. They also develop an
appreciation for the environment and marvel at the
wonder of the living plant. Teachers find this
program attractive because it is a meaningful
learning experience that children will remember
forever. In addition, the horticultural program
enhances the ability of students with learning
difficulties to comprehend the subject matter.
Children in this age bracket learn well when
they ‘do.’ This program is an effective
plan for teaching students scientific research in the
modern interdisciplinary style advocated by
authorities on education today.