This week I’m excited to spotlight the garden at Children’s Center for the Visually Impaired (CCVI). CCVI has been a member of the Schoolyard Gardens program for about 5 years and they generally grow in all three seasons. They are huge fans of sweet potatoes and in 2019 harvested an impressive 100 lbs.! Their garden is located at the Children’s Center Campus in KCMO and their wonderful staff and preschool students do an awesome job of maintaining their garden. I asked CCVI preschool teacher, Emily Wright, to share a little more about how they use the garden and here is what she had to say.
This has been an extremely fun garden year for our students. They have worked so hard and learned so much about vegetables, planting, and what it takes to grow different foods. Since most CCVI students are blind or visually impaired, it is such an amazing hands-on experience getting to be involved in the entire garden process. What most children learn from sight, our students learn from utilizing other senses and participating in hands on activities.
Each of our classes gets to harvest and taste test the veggies that are grown. A lot of times, if we have an abundance of vegetables, we will set it out for families and staff to take home and cook with.
We will also find recipes to try at school that involve using the vegetables harvested from our garden. Some of our favorite recipes involving the vegetables grown in the garden have been veggie wraps and mashed potatoes. This is an experience that builds a strong foundation for understanding where our food comes from and how to live a healthy lifestyle.
Emily, thank you so much for sharing and for all you and the other teachers are doing to ensure the garden thrives at CCVI. Each time I come to assist with a planting or harvest, I find myself excited and full of delight right along with the students, some of which are experiencing working in the garden for the very first time. Keep up the good work CCVI!