Garden Discovery Program

Growing Lifelong Healthy Habits 

It's always exciting when a pilot program takes flight, and Evergreen's Kindergarten Garden Discovery program, a project in partnership with the Western Maryland Health System and Mt. Savage School, did just that in the 2015-2016 school year.

Through pre and post-testing, Evergreen's program demonstrated a 15% increase in student food science/nutrition literacy. Students were found to retain that knowledge (77% retention rate), and were positively influenced to consume more fruits (44% increase) and vegetables (11%). The program started with 35 students, and included:

  • An introductory student field trip to Evergreen to  highlight the basics of good nutrition, where food comes from, and how it grows;
  • Weekly classroom activities;
  • Quarterly Family Fun Nights;  
  • Monthly parent/student “eat the rainbow” lunches;
  • Classroom teaching tools; and 
  • The creation of a schoolyard garden.

Mt. Savage will continue the program in the fall, and South Penn is adopting the program for their 2016-17 students (more than 70 children) and has asked Evergreen to implement its pre-K Growing in the Garden program for its Judy Center students (more than 75 children).