HARRY S TRUMAN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
Garden program bears fruits of student learning
Students who attend Harry S Truman Elementary School and their families had the chance to tend to its new vegetable garden over the summer.
The garden was initially planted by third, fourth and fifth grade students in May and hosts a wide variety of different vegetables including cabbages, onions, beans, peppers and tomatoes.
“There’s a lot of tomatoes,” HST student Madelynn Dilliard, whose family recently maintained the garden said. “It’s real easy picking.”
Families were encouraged to sign up for week-long volunteer shifts via an email the school sent out toward the end of the last school year.
Located in the rear of the building, the summer garden is a continuation of a program set up by the Kellyn Foundation, which planted the garden along with the students at no cost to the school.
“We have a partnership with them,” HST Principal Zachary Brem said. “They provide instruction to our third and fourth graders about healthy eating habits during the school year.”
In exchange for tending to the garden several times a week, the families could pick any vegetables that ripened during their time slot. The Dilliard family took multiple trips to the garden.
“We water, [and] if there’s any weeds we take care of those,” Madelynn’s mother Jennifer Dillard said.
The garden program serves as a win-win for both the families and the school, as the children are still able to take care of the plants even though the school year has ended. With the exception of the occasional gap-week, the gardening program has seen a steady attendance over the summer.
“There’s a lot more [vegetables] than I thought there was going to be,” Jennifer Dillard said.
HST, which has a three year partnership with the Kellyn Foundation, plans to use the garden to plant more vegetables in the upcoming school year.