Sprouts

Leonardo da Vinci has been growing indoors these past few weeks!

It may be a winter wonderland outside, but the Green Club has been staying green by sprouting our very own seeds indoors. We took some time to learn about how seeds grow and different plant seed cycles before trying our hand at growing our own sprouts.

Students acting out a seed flourishing under the perfect amount of water and sunlight

Students acting out a seed flourishing under the perfect amount of water and sunlight

Sprouts are packed with essential vitamins and nutrients and are great for growing indoors over the winter. After learning how to care for their sprouts, our students took on the task of watering their sprouts every day. Over the course of just a week we had two jars of delicious and nutritious sprouts!

Our group also planted some sprouting seeds in soil to see how seeds can grow in different mediums. We made Alfalfa-heads by decorating cups filled with soil as faces and let our Alfalfa sprouts grow as the hair. The grade 3’s at Leonardo da Vinci did an amazing job at remembering to care for their sprouts every day.

As the weeks have gone by, we’ve learnt about other great things in nature such as medicinal herbs, natural dyes, and healthy foods. Now we’re putting on our thinking caps to come up with a plan to build the Greenest City Ever.

Happy sprouting!

Happy sprouting!

Written by Green Tutor Anna Parker

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Posted in B.A.S.E. Daycare Green Clubs

Baking Workshop: Mini Berry Pies

Green Club teaches students to apply what we’re learning to our everyday lives. In this baking workshop, students learned about all the kinds of berries that we can grow here in Montreal. We can grow so many types of berries, like raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, gooseberries, and many more! After learning about how the plant grows, and the anatomy of the plant, we put our knowledge into practice by baking our own mini-berry pies!

Of course, we used locally grown berries in our pie recipe. Not only can we grow our own berries, but we can harvest and transform them into many recipes, including this one. Students worked in pairs to prepare the filling for the pies, cut out the dough to line the baking dish, and assemble the pies. We even made a lattice styled top crust for our little pies.

Here are the students preparing the filling for their pies. Let’s hope they keep the natural dye of the berries off of their white shirts!

Green Club kids are becoming familiar with the kitchen and its tools. Here they learn about measuring, cutting, and practice their tactile and spatial skills.

Don’t forget to add the top crust to your pie! Weaving strips of dough on top of the pie filling is the last touch before putting the pies in the oven.

All done! Eating it is the best part.

What a source of pride to enjoy the fruits (berries?) of your labour! Many Green Club students wrote out a personal copy of the pie recipe to take home and use again in the future. Maybe they’ll get the chance to grow and harvest their own berries in the summer, and truly witness the full cycle of the plant.

Written by Green Tutor Julia Gellman

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Posted in B.A.S.E. Daycare Green Clubs

Green Experiments at John Caboto

John Caboto Elementary School is very green and their Green Club students lead by example. Over the last few years, the Green Club has led initiatives that have produced excellent results like composting their organic waste, creating art projects from reused materials and creating a productive schoolyard garden. Head daycare technician Mrs. Tina Nardolilo encourages students to keep up these environmentaly friendly practices and motivates students to learn even more about living green. This led to an excellent fall workshop where already knowledgeable Green Club students learned how plants work in even more detail. Students ran an experiment to isolate the green pigment chlorophyll that plants use to make their own food from the sun’s energy. Students gained a deeper appreciation for how plants grow and how amazing it is that plants can use their green colour to make all the energy they need. Talk about living green!

Students in the John Caboto Green Club show the results of their Green Experiment

Written by Green Tutor Don Patton

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Posted in B.A.S.E. Daycare Green Clubs, Uncategorized

Planting Bulbs at Dalkeith

It’s been a fun and productive fall session at the Dalkeith Elementary School’s Green Club. It being the first year that the daycare has done the Green Club programming, we had a blank slate to work with. Green Club at Dalkeith got off to a flying start due to their enthusiastic principal Mr. John Wright encouraging the Green Club to add a more colourful garden in the front of the school and the support of the head daycare technician Mrs. Cynthia Racicot to make more out of the large schoolyard garden plot. The students worked hard outside cleaning up the garden space for planting next season as well as planting both tulip and garlic bulbs that will start growing early next spring. Other activities that the students have done in preparation for next spring are saving seeds from colourful flowers and preparing compost for use in the garden. As the days got colder and the Green Club moved inside, learning activities have focused on eating nutritious foods and contributing to improving the health of the environment.

Students in the Dalkeith Green Club planting garlic in their schoolyard garden.

Written by Green Tutor Don Patton

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Posted in B.A.S.E. Daycare Green Clubs, Uncategorized

Transforming our Harvest

As the Fall turns to Winter, the Green Club is learning about harvesting the last garden plants, storing herbs, and saving seeds.

HERB TRANSFORMATION

To close our gardens, we collected herbs and hung them to dry. Now the Green Club has our very own stock of dried spices, from herbs that we grew and harvested ourselves!  The students in the Green Club made their own spice jars, with creative labels and titles. Organic and home-grown oregano, thyme, sage, dill, lemon balm, and many more!

Herbs Hanging Out

Herbs Hanging Out

Hand Made Spice Jars by Edward Murphy

Hand Made Spice Jars by Edward Murphy

HERB-INFUSED OILS

Students also created their own recipe of flavoured oils, by infusing olive oil with fresh herbs from the garden. Families of Green Club members have been enjoying adding these flavoured oils to salads, and incoroporating the oils into their cooking. The students are becoming experts at identifying the different scents and flavours of each herb.

Infused Oils at Our Lady of Pompei

Infused Oils at Our Lady of Pompei

Beautiful Oils at Our Lady of Pompei

Fancy Flavoured Oils at Our Lady of Pompei

SEED SAVING

As the garden plants reached maturity, the children were taught how to save seeds, which allows us to plant new seeds in the spring, from the plants we grew this year! This age-old practice reduces the number of seeds we have to buy next year, and we can be sure that our seeds come from healthy organic gardens. We collected dried up seeds from our favourite mature plants, and made our own personalized seed packets to take home and plant in the spring. Hope you’re ready to plant some spicy nasturtium flowers in your own home or garden next spring! Here we are at Our Lady of Pompei making seed packets for the Green Club, and to take home.

Now the Green Club students have participated in an important phase of the garden: Harvest Time! As you can see, the harvest isn’t just about collecting plants to eat, but it’s also about harvesting herbs and seeds, and transforming them into a number of different things. After this year’s harvest, the Green Club members have earned their role as food transformers!

Written by Green Tutor Julia Gellman

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Posted in B.A.S.E. Daycare Green Clubs

General Vanier Harvest Party 2014

In late September General Vanier celebrated its first year of its brand new schoolyard garden. City Farm School interns Camila and Alex were on hand to host the party along with Green Initiative advisor Marcus Lobb. The party was a total success with dozens of other daycare students visiting the garden and being served pizza and salad by our very own Green Club members.

Big line up for food!

Big line up for food!

Making the popcorn that we grew in the garden

Making the popcorn that we grew in the garden

Relaxing in the Autumn sun

Relaxing in the Autumn sun

Green Club 2014

Green Club 2014

 

 

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Green Club Harvest Parties 2014

Harvest Party!

Harvest Party!

Autumn is the time of year for our green club students to celebrate the energy and effort spent working on their schoolyard gardens. Eight months of work goes into creating these gardens each year. The students begin raising their seedlings and deciding which plants will go into the garden way back in March. They plant the seedlings they raise in May, and visit the garden weekly for the rest of the year minus the summer months.

The month of September saw four schools host a Harvest Party. Among them were two schools who were celebrating the third year of their gardens: Pierre de Coubertin and Saint Monica, as well as two gardens that were celebrating their inaugural years: General Vanier and Hampstead.

HAMPSTEAD

Hampstead Elementary enjoyed black bean and pumpkin tacos during their harvest party, of which we grew both items in the garden this year. We also had a salad from the garden and herbal tea! City Farm School Intern Ev utilized their cooking talents which had the kids coming back for seconds and even thirds. Green Initiative Advisor Marcus Lobb demanded that the kids dance if they wanted thirds which 4 students took him up on! The party was quiet and relaxing, except for when Daycare Technician Cathy came out and really got the party going! Jokes… thanks to her and her wonderful staff for helping make the day!

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Serving Tacos at Hampstead

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Preparing our Garden Grown Salad with the Green Club

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Fall Decorations on our Bean Canopy

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Green Club members sitting on our new outdoors classroom benches

Fall Delight

Fall Delight

 

 SAINT MONICA

Saint Monica is one of oldest and most successful gardens, a product of amazing parents and children who value the garden as an integral element of youth education. This year we had all of the daycare students come and participate in the harvest party. Julie and Erika of the City Farm School helped host an exciting event that featured pizza, and Mr. Marcus on guitar. Thanks to everyone who came and participated!

 

Fall in the outdoor classroom - St. Monica

Fall in the outdoor classroom – St. Monica

St. Monica Harvest Party

St. Monica Harvest Party

 

Mr. Marcus serenades the green club.

Mr. Marcus serenades the green club.

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