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Learning through gardening: Debra Salls’ class

Debra Salls, a third grade teacher at Lee Elementary school, has inspired her students by capturing their excitement through the garden but also through their minds in the unit studies that go hand-in-hand with the garden.

The class is growing a variety of fresh produce, such as collard greens, beans, beets, cabbage, carrots and radishes. They are also growing their own fresh herbs of basil, parsley and dill.

“We [have] found out things about plants that we didn’t know before,” said Alayah Norwood, one of Salls’ students. In general, the students are excited about all the new information they are learning about plants and gardening.

The class has even had a few surprises; the students thought that they had planted cauliflower, but it became evident after a few weeks that it was actually collards that had been planted in their garden plot.

Amanda Willoughby, a St. Leo University Student Teacher, who informed the students about the basics of their garden, visited the class.

On Thursday, April 7, the students collected collard greens to prepare and cook along with some cornbread that Salls had cooked. All the students approved the taste of their own school garden-grown plants and many were looking forward to sampling the beets that had been grown by the class as well.

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