Everything we do at UCCC is based on the LUME Approach...
...gardening is no different.
In our Seed To Table project we follow 5 simple steps
1) Soil is like a home for our seeds.
At UCCC, we believe that the Psychodynamic Development of young children is the driver of all other types of learning. Children need to feel safe and contained with a strong core before they can be expected to learn abstract concepts. The garden provides lots of opportunities for us to help children learn to nurture small things like they often want to be nurtured. In the garden, we can mirror back a child's emotions, such as missing home, by talking about how the soil is a home for a seed, This tells the child that they are being listened to emotionally.
2) Next we talk about what we planted.
Even an activity like gardening can support Early Literacy Development. The development of literacy skills is a complex process that begins at birth. Language development is a critical prerequisite for reading and writing. For young children, conversations with adults help to build vocabulary and phonetic awareness that will support letter recognition and reading later on.
3) Once the plants start growing, we watch to see how they change.
4) When the vegetables are ready, we harvest our crops.
5) Finally, we get to eat what we have grown. YUM!
Values and Character can begin to develop as soon as a baby understands that there are others outside of themselves - this is the beginning of empathy. Our approach with young children is to support what comes naturally. With the Seed To Table project, asking questions like, "Who gets to eat what?" or "How would you feel if she got a bigger radish than you?" enhance the development of empathy at a time when it is most critical.