School Garden Curriculum
The Slow Food USA School Garden curriculum is driven by the fundamental Slow Food mission of good, clean and fair food for all.
One of the keys to the long term success of school gardens is our ability to link lessons learned in the garden to the subject areas in the classroom. Basically, how can the school garden support the important academic areas taught by the teachers? In this section, we share many resources from Slow Food leaders that make that connection between the garden and the classroom. In particular, we feature the first publication of our anticipated Good, Clean and Fair School Garden Curriculum. We are thrilled to share the Good curriculum now that can be used by classroom teachers and garden leaders to teach Sensory Education and Kitchen Skills in the garden.
The Good Curriculum
“Good” means enjoying the pleasures of healthy and delicious food. The “Good” curriculum consists of an introduction and two chapters. Chapters include “Sensory Education” and “Kitchen Tools and Skills.”
The Clean Curriculum
“Clean”is gardening for sustainability with environmentally conscious practices. The “Clean” curriculum consists of a short introduction and two chapters. Chapter 1 is titled “Basic Garden Skills and Knowledge” and Chapter 2 is titled “A Slow Food Garden.”
The Fair Curriculum
“Fair” indicates producing food that respects economic and social justice. The “Fair” Curriculum is still in development; stay tuned!
Our goal is to provide a different kind of approach to student engagement, one that is rooted in the Slow Food values of Good, Clean, and Fair food for all. We engage children around the food itself, rather than only embedding garden lessons in traditional classroom curriculum. We certainly believe that using the garden as a laboratory for courses such as science and social studies is a worthy enterprise, and we want to encourage its continuation. However, as Slow Food, we also want to encourage teachers and volunteers to use their garden to teach children about:
- Where food comes from
- What real food tastes like
- How to grow and harvest fresh produce in an environmentally friendly way
- How food connects to culture and community
Getting Started + School Garden Resources
Launching a garden program at your school requires lots of planning, research, meetings and support. The concept of a school garden needs to be shared and marketed to the school community. A strong school garden team is necessary for leadership and vision for the overall project. In this section, we will provide Best Practices from Slow Food leaders on these various needs of a new school garden program. We will provide concrete examples of resources from Slow Food chapters that you can download and adapt for your project.