We want students to see the great potential in the natural resources that are present at certain times of the year.  Therefore it is important that our teachers are aware of what is available and what can be done with that resource.  For example, at the height of the soft fruit season we can harvest black currants and use them for a variety of purposes: fruit cordial; natural dyes; fruit leathers and more.  When students are guided through these activities they learn basic processes which are useful again in the future and which in themselves contain a huge amount of  learning, whether in terms of measurement, science, literacy, numeracy, history, culture, mythology etc.


Knowing what is available, and knowing how to use the natural resource is a skill that used to be commonplace in the countryside.  However many people have lost touch with the natural rhythms of the seasons and the processes needed to gain benefit from the resource, be it willow, wild garlic, sloes, hazel, or any other natural item.  In horticulture, we are trying to apply management of natural plants and products to our greatest benefit, and so the vegetable garden is is exemplification of the way we have honed and improved a plant through selection and breeding for the benefit of human nutrition and health.  This way of working seems completely natural and seems to instill interest and a love of learning in the student.  There are some guides here which help a teacher shape a session plan.  They are not exhaustive - but they are a structure to be built upon depending on the student and the level at which they are working.  They should all be enjoyable activities and they are all connected to the time of year.




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Created by Jim Hildyard