The CitySprouts Model
CitySprouts School Partnership Program is designed to build our partner schools capacity to integrate school gardens as an instructional resource for teachers, an effective and engaging means for food and health education for students, and as a unifying center to strengthen school communities and family involvement. The CitySprouts program opens the door to garden-based education for thousands of children each year. Children become more engaged in ways that are critical to their success in writing, reading, science, social studies, and math skills. They develop more respect for the environment and nature. The practice of tasting the food they’ve grown in the garden sets children on a path toward life-long healthy food choices.
Our garden educators provide 10 hours of support to schools each week, meeting with teachers in grade-level staff meetings as well as individually to help them develop and implement garden-based extensions to their core units in science, English language arts, math and other subjects. CitySprouts garden coordinators ensure that each schoolyard garden is planted and maintained throughout the growing season.
Read more about outcomes and evaluation in our latest CitySprouts Partnership Snapshot.
Early Learning Initiative
The goal of this initiative is to build the capacity of early education teachers, families and garden coordinators to utilize the school garden for authentic science learning. Outcomes will impact students, teachers, families and the CitySprouts school garden model. This work will help ensure that all children enter third grade with a solid foundation in scientific thinking and content knowledge. Teachers will gain confidence and knowledge using inquiry-based science practices. Family connections will serve to reinforce and support the learning derived from the project’s curriculum. The CitySprouts school garden model will be enhanced by evidence-based, comprehensive science practices, positively impacting the service it provides to its public school partners.
- 97% of teachers find that the garden experience increases students’ curiosity about the natural world*
- 80% of teachers find the garden an asset for their English Language Learning students
- 69% of teachers find that students ask deeper questions as a result of garden-based lessons
- 96% of teachers find that the garden helps them create meaningful hands-on learning opportunities for their students
*We measure impact from data collected through weekly records of Garden Coordinators’ teacher interactions (Garden Coordinator Logs) and an annual survey of teachers. Outcomes based on 200 teacher responses.
Our School Partners
Our partners in this work are the public schools and school districts we serve. Our underlying principle is that integrated garden-based learning needs the support of teachers, schools and district leadership if it is to make a meaningful change in children’s health and learning.
Cambridge Public Schools