Tag Archives: kitchen garden

Integrated Studies: Gardening, Obesity, Open Source Learning

In Synergy we have six groups working on community issues: obesity, cafeteria design and cleanliness, Nancy Creek, designing a fair to raise awareness for Habitat for Humanity, sleep, and graffiti.

How do we create a movement to raise awareness?  How do we connect people to work for a common cause?  How do we learn from one another?  (All good questions critical to Synergy success.)

Listen to Roger Doiron, the founder of Kitchen Gardeners International:

Could you pick out the essential learnings from many areas of school?  Economics, persuasive writing, biology, arithmetic, algebra, geometry,  environmental science, and more, right?  Did you catch how he used social media to promote his agenda?

How much space does the White House vegetable garden require on the lawn?  How much would it cost to buy the plants to grown in this garden?

Suppose you don’t have that much space to dedicate to a garden?  How much space do you have?  How much would the plants you need for your garden cost?  What plants should you grow?  How will you determine the nutrients needed to amend your soil?  Will you eat more vegetables if you grow them yourself?  Will you save money by growing some of your food?

Live in an apartment?  Don’t like dirt?  Interested in having a garden in your classroom? Got a window? Want to see “Learn and Share” open-source collaboration in action? Listen to Britta Riley talk about Windowfarms, vertical hydroponic platforms for growing food in city windows:

What could we learn if we built the latest windowfarm design, the V3.0, the Modular Airlift Multicolumn Array?

Increasing intake of healthy food is one way to fight obesity.  I wonder if our teams can find threads to connect their projects – could they choose to work in their interest for a common cause?  Could the Nancy Creek team raise awareness of how to care for Nancy Creek and advocate for a healthier lifestyle at the same time? Would they consider creating exercise information stations along the trail that follows Nancy Creek? Is there a link between the appropriate and necessary amount of sleep, exercise, and health?  How could the spring fair team plan to advocate for all Habitat Houses to have a garden in the backyard?  Could one team build a “getting started gardening” resource guide?  Could the graffiti team create a movement using art to motivate making healthier choices?

Zooming out, what can we learn about integrated studies, student choice, and interdependence?  Could we choose to work in our field of interest for a common cause?  How do we harness the power of social media to create opportunities for open-source collaboration to improve, learn, create, innovate, reflect, and revise?