PHOTOS: Preschool Students Using St. Margaret’s Garden to Learn and Serve

The St. Margaret’s garden is an important learning space for Early Childhood Development Center students, who spend regular learning time investigating, discovering, interacting and expressing their findings while in nature.

By observing differences in the colors and shapes of leaves, smelling different herbs, counting the number of fruit on a citrus tree, measuring space between plants, discovering insects that live there, or tracking the growth of vegetables over time, Preschool students can explore concepts of science, engineering, math and art in an outdoor setting.

The St. Margaret’s garden also is utilized as a way to introduce the young Tartans to service. Currently, vegetables such as snap peas, carrots, tomatoes, beets and lettuce are sprouting in the garden. When they are ready to harvest, the food will be donated to Father Serra’s Food Pantry, which works to serve the needy in the community. The young Tartans frequently discuss this service component with their teachers during garden time.

“Through their time in the garden, students develop an understanding of where food comes from and how it grows. We also frequently talk to the students about how their work will benefit those in our community that don’t have enough to eat.” ECDC Motor Development Specialist Shelley Harmon said. “It’s a wonderful way for students to develop compassion and learn in a way that will ultimately serve others.”
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An independent preschool through grade 12 college-preparatory day school in Orange County, California