VSGA: HMA Journalism Award

As part of the Victorian School’s Garden Awards students are encouraged to enter a new category that aims to incorporate other aspects of a schools’ curriculum into the practical gardening outlet. The category is the HMA Journalism Award for Best Horticultural Article. The question to be answered by submissions was ‘What are the best personal benefits of having a school garden?’

The prize for this category is a $1,000 voucher for the school to spend at NGIV participating retailers as well as publication of the entry into GroundSwell and HMA News magazines.

And the winner is….

‘What are the best personal benefits of having a school garden?

By Tara Presley Age 17

I attend Warragul and District Specialist School. We have a garden full of fruits, vegetables and herbs. Some of them are pomegranates, carrots and rosemary. That’s just three of them. We are currently making mosaics to know which plant is what.

I think all schools need a vegetable garden, even high schools should have them. It teaches kids how to grow fruit and vegetables, kids learn independence, kids get lots of fresh air, kids get to play in the dirt, they learn focus and patience, teamwork and social skills and they also have lots of fun and they will eat the vegetables because they grew them by themselves.

I believe that school gardens are important because people get fitter and healthier and children can help because it’s easy. I believe that children should have their own vegetable garden because it will give them something to look forward to and every day they can go outside to water their garden.

School gardens teach kids independence because they have to take care of plants and make sure that nothing happens to them.

In our school garden we are always trying new things, like during winter time we put straw over the top of the plants to keep them from getting frost. We made special stick walls to help the vines grow up, and we are now using ground up coffee beans in our garden. We have a big worm farm in our garden too.

School gardens help kids with their social skills because when they are outside with other students they talk to each other and work together. Sometimes they even end up talking to students in their class that they never knew before and they become good friends. Therefore school gardens are great for school because kids learn how to grow fruit and vegetables and it helps with their social skills.

Tara Presley from Warragul District Specialist School accepting her certificate at the recent Award presentation ceremony.

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