In 2003, New York’s Public School 41 established a garden program through the collaboration of parents and teachers funding by local businesses. The school grows seasonal veggies and herbs, fruit trees, and plants native to the region. Most of the plants are in raised beds or containers sited on the paved inner schoolyard directly adjacent the building.
PS 41 believes in the value of hands-on learning to foster understanding of contemporary environmental issues. The garden becomes an outdoor classroom where students are exposed firsthand to ecology and food systems through composting, growing, harvesting, and observing birds and insects that visit site. The school also starts seedlings in the spring which are planted in nearby Washington Square Park.
EDITOR’S NOTE: A curriculum taught through urban agriculture, wildlife and habitat with an on-ground farm and outdoor “laboratory”.