Revolutionising Childhood Education
In case you missed it, we’ve decided here at ToBeMe to grow our own food! You most certainly haven’t read that wrong. Wondering why and what that has to do with your child’s education? Please, allow us to explain.
We’re revolutionising the way children learn.
In fact, there is an abundance of research to support the notion! Farming allows children to use any combination of the three ways of learning – kinesthetic, visual and auditory. Our children are going to learn and appreciate the interdependence between themselves and the living things around them!Farming brings so much more than just physical benefits to children; but also benefits their emotional, mental and physical health. It provides the why of living.
An expert’s advice
The educational benefits to having children actively engaged in farming are endless. According to ToBeMe Thought Leader and founder of Ambrosia Dietetics, Renae Reid, these are some of the incredible ways in which children will benefit;
1. School gardens and farm-based programs have the potential to promote health and well-being in children. They offer hands-on learning and can increase children’s access to healthy foods. They learn where foods come from and how they are grown. This can ultimately influence food choices both in childhood and into adulthood.
2. Understanding why children select the foods they do is complex. What has been observed is that children who are involved in fruit and vegetable growth and preparation are more likely to eat higher amounts compared with those who are not.
3. There is a good body of research that shows that children who learn about health and nutrition in practical and theoretical ways have a greater understanding than when taught theory alone. School gardens and farm-based programs are a great way to incorporate practical, hands-on learning to influence long-term health.
4. Food gardens are a valuable way to teach children about growth and nutrients. Plants need many of the same things as humans to thrive including water, care and nutrients.
5. School gardens and farm-based programs offer opportunities for learning not just related to health. Children can learn about maths, science and important life skills all within their garden.
They’ll be taught extremely beneficial and lifelong lessons in responsibility, safety and sustainability. They’ll also learn about the life cycle. As well as how to care for plants and animals around them. Going as far as learning where their food comes from and the relationship between effort and reward. Better yet, they’ll acquire so many other skills to carry for life.
Hands on approach
Children will be involved in the journey right from day one. They will be given the freedom and flexibility to express themselves! Diving right into set up and planting, all the way through to harvest. Or otherwise, affectionately known as “Seed to Plate”, where the children will get to literally eat off their own first harvest!
Currently a blank canvas, we are working towards making the farm completely organic. We are working closely with ACO to achieve this status as soon as humanly possible! The farm is also chemical free and pesticide free. All the animals are free range, where they live happily and harmoniously together.
Did you know, if you grow tomato and basil together, you’ll wind up with the freshest, juiciest and plumpest tomatoes ever? How so you ask? The Basil repels insects and disease, improves growth and enhances flavor, meaning its companion, the tomato, has the perfect conditions to grow.
This incredible concept is called Companion Planting; a concept which will be utilized extensively on the farm. Which also provides an opportunity for children to understand the meaning behind a harmonious environment. Companion Planting is the careful placement of plants, especially vegetables and herbs, which have been shown to have beneficial effects on one another.
The Bigger Picture
This extends far beyond the walls of ToBeMe. We plan on promoting local produce and Australian farming by educating our children, families and community on the importance of buying LOCAL! Food travels the world and is highly processed. Not only does this reduce the quality and nutrients it also increases our carbon footprint. Our vision is to eventually reach a point where we only consume 100% Australian made produce. Produce that is made up of 100% Australian ingredients… not 99% (have you ever wondered what that 1% is?)
Most importantly, we’re working together with Mother Nature! And, we’re teaching the future generations to come to look after the planet that we call home. Our children today, will acquire the skills required to educate the children of tomorrow. Hence, our provision of education will transcend time and place – our ultimate objective achieved.
There are so many benefits for children to be a part of agricultural farming, too many to list. But if we stay connected to and live by the premise of respecting the land from which we grow and thrive, the rewards are boundless. We can’t wait for our little ones to embark on this enormous project. One thought at a time, one concept at a time.
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