2 year old children are amazed when the Sunflowers they planted grow so much taller than them!
We are Farmers
Sprouts Children's Center is one of a handful of Preschools in the City of Philadelphia, to have its own Urban Garden. The garden is tended by the Preschool Children starting at an early age. Our garden is located next door to our 3,000 square foot gym, and offers many learning opportunities. Young children love to smell the different herbs and plants, whereas two year olds will marvel at the height that Sunflowers can achieve. As children grow, they plant seeds and learn to feed and water them. As fruits and vegetables become ripe we harvest them and make delicious salads or give the produce away. You can't get any more local than this!
It is really interesting to see motivated children organize themselves into work teams to uproot bulbs in the Spring and then break off the tops so as to store them for replanting the following season, and then recycle the leaves into our worm farm so that we can fertilize the garden. We make our own flower pots out of rolled up newspaper which will break down when the seedlings are planted out in the garden.
We have our very own Farm to Table program, where we nurture the seeds we plant until the resulting plants, flowers, fruits, vegetables and herbs are ready to harvest. We then cook and taste the food that we have grown. Learning lessons abound in the garden, and we also visit local farmers markets to see what other produce is available, and we support local sustainable businesses as a matter of preference.
In 2016, we have been given a new challenge. The garden space at the back of the gym, was taken over by the new house that is being built on the plot behind in Delhi Street. Once the construction is complete, we will once again venture out into the back yard and design and build a new garden. The plan is to integrate learning stations into the spaces there, and part of the redesign will include some vertical gardening elements, now that we have lost a little bit of our horizontal space. Keep an eye out here to see our progress when the weather gets warmer.