Last spring, students and faculty at Ranney School in Tinton Falls, NJ, celebrated the establishment of two new sustainable gardens on campus during Earth Day 2014: an organic garden, seeded by Lower School students, and a rain garden, constructed by Upper School students. The organic garden had an incredible yield of vegetables for its first season—many of which were harvested and put into in a spring salad by Lower School students—and the Upper School rain garden has established itself throughout the summer.
As students return to campus for the start of the school-year, they are already reaping the benefits of the organic garden, which now features a growing wild flower maze, a composting station and a pumpkin patch, which students will have the opportunity to pick from in October! Lower School students have been spending part of their science period exploring the garden, making sketches and written observations of their findings. They then use that newly gained hands-on knowledge to enhance classroom discussions and lessons.