Students and community benefit from Will Rogers Elementary garden

Will Rogers Elementary has added a garden to enhance their lesson plans for students. The garden was started las year and since has grown to include several vegetables. The students, they say they love it. Pronews 7 is featuring the garden in this week's Region 16 Spotlight on Education.

"The garden got started because we were giving away at the time 170 something Snack Pak 4 Kids every week and at the end of this year we were up to 200. So there's a bigger need for food in our community," said Will Rogers Elementary Principal, Terri Huseman.

Huseman said, the school garden has transformed into a community garden with families in the neighborhood helping take care of it, and free to pick fresh vegetables for their dinner table. For the students, they get the learning experience of how to plant and maintain a garden.

"We planted them and got some buckets and all that and it was nice. Since I was in the 4th grade and came back I saw the garden and there was a difference, now they're growing big already," said 5th grader at Will Rogers Elementary, Alexia Calzada.

"We grow green beans, lettuce, peppers, cucumbers, zucchini, yellow squash, sunflowers, tomatoes, onions, pumpkins, beats and radishes," said 4th grader at Will Rogers Elementary, Ernesto.

Once a week the students meet in the garden to discuss different lesson plans, and journal about it. That in turn, has lead to the students inspiring their own families to plant their own garden.

"I told my mom about the garden at school that we had a garden at school and she said that's good. One of my uncles I told him too and he said we should plant a garden too," said Calzada.

"I already have a little garden in my backyard. What do you grow in it? There's a watermelon that's this big, and a pumpkin that's about this little," said Ernesto.

Huseman said the Potter County Master Gardeners helped teach school officials how to grow their garden by even putting flowers in it to help with pollination.