Thursday, November 21, 2013

Hands, Minds, Hearts

"Hey, this is fun," the almost-six-foot 8th grader said to his buddy sitting next to him on the garden workbench.   These young gentlemen were planting violets for holiday gifts. As they gently lifted each seedling into the soil, then patted the earth down around each plant, one said to the other, "Be careful, these plants are alive."

I hear comments like these all the time in my work with the Branciforte Middle School 6th, 7th and 8th graders.  The sixth graders who plant daffodils want to mark their names on sticks next to their daffodil bulbs in the ground.   They run to check each week to see how their nursery of carrot, radish, and cilantro seeds are faring after our first autumn rain.  "Wow- these taste like cilantro!" they exclaim, surprised after thinning seedlings to make room for the rest of the crops.

It is such joy to be outside with kids–outdoors–out of doors, under the sky and sun.   They happily dig up garden beds, and always want to be the ones to water so they can make rainbows in the air while "accidentally" getting their friends all wet.  Branciforte garden is thriving as we move into winter, and the students keep on keepin on.

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