Home > Projects > Growing Sustainably: Garden Education & Garden Club
students and a facilitator are looking at a tomato plant

Childhood obesity rates are disproportionately high in Santa Clara County, 25% of children were categorized as being overweight or obese in 2016. The nutrition and garden education program engages school age children in activities designed to teach them the importance of living healthy. The program includes garden education during school hours, an after school garden club, and gardening workshops. K-12 students learn science, math, nutrition and other subjects by participating in gardening activities. SJSU students who are trained in garden and nutrition education work with K-12 students, parents and teachers to use the garden as an outdoor living classroom. Lesson plan topics included recycling, tree science, photosynthesis, seed germination, composting, worms, soil components, bees and pollination, greenhouses, climate change, the plant life cycle, and the water cycle. This year’s Garden Club included a trip to the urban farm, Garden to Table, to witness sustainable agriculture in action. The young students planted tomatoes, learned about the importance of worms and compost, and planted sunflower seeds to take home with them.

By the Numbers | 2016-17

21 SJSU students engaged

227 residents engaged

2,460 hours of service

$59,384 value

Project Impact

69% of participants reported that Garden Club helped them with other subjects in school, including math and science

70% of Garden Workshop participants reported they are now eating more fruit

100% of participants in Garden Club were exposed to and able to eat a variety of new fruits and vegetables

53% of students reported they like being outside more because of Garden Workshop

64% of Garden Club participants feel they now know more about gardening and their environment

Community Voices

“One girl told me she had gone home and made our same recipe with her mom, but they added some new ingredients to really make it their own. This moment demonstrates that the nutrition education kids receive at school can have an impact on the food and health choices made by their entire family.”
–SJSU Student Facilitator

“[Garden Workshop helped me understand the book Esperanza Rising] because there are vegetables and fruit in Esperanza Rising that we know from Garden Workshop.”
–Garden Workshop participant

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