We have our own fully functioning nursery vegetable patch which has recently been renovated to make it really accessible and exciting for the children. The whole nursery comes together to fully make the most of this luxury and we grow lots of stuff!
The children are completely involved in the whole of the growing process from planting, to watering to eventually picking and eating. The children go out throughout the day to tend to their produce and take great ownership of their plants.
The staff run projects and activities based on the growing cycle which ends up in healthy cooking experiences using their very own fresh fruit and veg. The children take real pride in this whole process and it is a fantastic first hand tool for active learning.
We have lots little watering cans and trowels and spades and we take care to make sure the children learn to respect the growing cycle and take real care of the produce. We don’t let them just dig around the place and make a mess – going up their in small groups, talking to them about what is up there and what the plants need to flourish. Digging and having fun is for sand and other play things – not the vegetable patch which we use to teach and develop skills and knowledge.
We also use our pear tree to make chutneys to take home and for the children’s snacks and elder flower to make cordial. Yum.