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Fifth Graders Make Lavender Sachets from Hand-Dyed Cloth May 14, 2009

Filed under: 2008-2009 School Year — gardenexplorer1 @ 6:31 am

Fifth Graders in Mrs. Carrico/Mrs. Frost’s class and Ms. Malesky’s class made lavender sachets using the purple silk cloth they dyed with purple cabbage. They have the sachets to their mothers for Mothers’ Day! Mrs. Goerke brought extraordinary skill in guiding Ms. Malesky’s class through the sewing process!



Fourth Graders Make Herbal Remedies

Filed under: 2008-2009 School Year — gardenexplorer1 @ 6:26 am

Fourth graders studying the Spanish Colonial period planted herbs that were grown in the California Missions. Now that the herbs have grown, Ms. Kuhl’s and Ms. Adams classes used their herbs to make a variety of products.

  • Culinary Herb Mix:  Leaves of basil, oregano, and garlic were taken from their stems and mixed together for students to take home for cooking.
  • Mint leaves and lavender stems were steeped in boiling water to make a mint/lavender tea once thought to be useful for stomach ailments.
  • Using a recipe supplied by our Master Gardener and said to be hundreds of years old, students cooked mint leaves in Crisco (the recipe called for lard!) until the oil turned green. Then the mint was strained from the oil and the green oil was beaten with grated beeswax until it was the consistency of frosting or chapstick. (We thought of this as f a  Burt’s Bees meets Betty Crocker sort of concoction.) The resulting poltice was once used to soothe  burns. Most students, however, thought it would make a good Mothers’ Day gift for soothing their mothers’ rough and tired feet!
  • Lavender sachets — students peeled lavender blossoms from their stems and crushed them to release their fragrance. Then they wrapped the crushed blossoms up in cloth and tied it with a ribbon as a Mother’s Day gift.

Mother’s Day Sweet Peas

Filed under: 2008-2009 School Year — gardenexplorer1 @ 5:57 am

Mr. Sarda’s kindergarten Sweet Pea garden has really taken off! Students in five different classes were able to pick large bouquets for their mothers for Mothers’ Day! Mr. Sarda’s class also made sequential, circular books about the cycle of their pea planting experience, learning to write some garden words while they worked: Peas – Plants – Flowers – Pods – Peas.


Explorer Family Hiking

Filed under: Outdoor Families — gardenexplorer1 @ 5:16 am

Many Explorer Families have expressed an interested in supporting each other in exploring the outdoors. Richard Louv makes it very simple in his book Last Child in the Woods – Saving Our Children from Nature Deficit Disorder. Go outside, he says, and, if you feel a little nervous about exploring on your own, go with another family. Each family has a place they enjoy being together outside. Share your place in  nature with another family, and expand the network of our children who get outside to explore nature on a regular basis. 

This blog can be used as a forum for families to connect in nature until we find a better way to do it. If you have a hike you would like to share with another Explorer family, send this blog a post with your family’s last name (NOT your child’s name or age) and your child’s teacher’s name, and where you would like to hike. Families can connect with each other safely offline using the school directory, by looking up your contact information. 

(Note: This is not an Explorer-sponsored activity. If connecting everyone through the blog gets too onerous, we’ll figure out another way to help families connect. Meanwhile, let’s give it a try!