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School Garden Lesson Plans


Health Education

  • Class Cookbook (PDF) 2nd grade
    The class compiles a cookbook with favorite family recipes to illustrate how different cultures use similar ingredients to create distinctive foods.
  • Comparative Tasting Format (PDF) K-6
    Students will be able to use their senses to observe different aspects of a variety of fruits or vegetables during a comparative tasting.
  • Fruits and Vegetables
    Fun information about different fruits and vegetables.
  • Fruits and Vegetables for Health (PDF)
    Five lessons designed to teach students about the production, distribution, and nutritional value of California’s fresh produce.
  • A Sour Subject (PDF)
    Students compare and contrast grapefruits and lemons.
  • Team Nutrition Fruits and Vegetables Lessons for Preschool Children (PDF)
    A set of 10 lesson plans that encourage preschool children to develop healthy eating and physical activity habits.
  • Tools and Us (PDF) K-3
    This activity uses role playing to demonstrate safe tool use in the garden.
  • Vitamin Values (PDF) 4-6
    This activity helps make the connection between different food types, the nutrients they supply and how they keep us healthy.


  • Tomato Trivia (PDF)
    Using tomatoes as a theme, students practice their math, language arts and science skills of estimating, measuring, counting, graphing, listening, speaking and sequencing.

Reading/Language Arts

  • What’s Bugging You? (PDF)
    Through a variety of activities, students reinforce their skills of reading, writing, designing, investigating, and problem-solving while learning about a current issue— pest management.


  • Adapt-A-Seed (PDF) K-6
    Students will use hand-made materials to adapt seeds for different means of dispersal, such as flying and floating.
  • Compost Bags (PDF) K-3
    Students manage natural decomposition be creating their own compost bag.
  • Compost Creatures and Friends (PDF)
    Students learn about the inhabitants of the compost ecosystem and appreciate what is involved in creating healthy soils.
  • The Compost Charming Cycle (Word, 50KB)
    Students will learn how composting works and what items can be composted.
  • Dig Me, and Dig Me Again (PDF) K-6
    This activity demonstrates the double-digging method of soil preparation.
  • Independent Plant Growth Experiment (Word, 232KB)
    Students discover how plants grow using the scientific process.
  • Making a Worm Compost Bin (PDF) K-3
    Students will be able to help build a worm compost bin, recycle fruits and vegetables, and compost food waste.
  • The Mysterious Plant Caper (PDF)
    This exciting, hands-on unit is an integrated, thematic exploration which takes students on a search for clues to solve the PLANT CAPER MYSTERY.
  • Seed Magic (PDF) K-3
    Students dissect seeds in order to observe seed parts and then plant them with and without the conditions they need to see how they grow.
  • Seed Saving and Sowing (PDF) K-3
    In this activity, students learn about saving seeds and growing tomato plants.
  • Sensual Soil (PDF) K-3
    Through exploring soil, students use most of their senses to discover different qualities of soil.
  • Soil (PDF)
    Students learn the components of soil and how plants grow in different types of soil.
  • Soil Detectives (PDF) K-6
    Students collect soil and make observations, comparing soils from different areas.
  • The Sprouting Seed (Word, 162KB)
    Students explore the process of germination.
  • Stem, Root, Leaf, or Fruit? (PDF) Grades K-3
    Students classify foods and spices they eat according to plant parts and make a vegetable and dip snack.
  • Temperature Hunt (PDF) K-3
    Supervised groups of students search for the coldest and warmest locations in the garden or school yard.
  • To Dig or Not to Dig (PDF) 4-6
    Students conduct a garden experiment on the effects of compaction on plant growth by monitoring seedling growth in compacted and loosened soil.
  • Water We Doing (PDF) K-3
    In this two-week project, students observe the relationship between watering and plant growth and apply their experimental findings to the garden.
  • WE Garden (PDF)
    10 lesson plans helpful for growing a successful school garden.
  • We Got It Covered: Mulching in the Garden (PDF) 4-6
    Students learn the process of mulching a garden.
  • Weeding, Writing, and Arithmetic (PDF) K-6
    Students maintain a weed and non-weed section of a garden bed.
  • Wet and Wonderful (PDF) K-3
    Students will pay much closer attention to how much they water and how they do it when they understand that it makes a difference to the plants.

Social Studies

  • Asparagus (PDF) K-3
    Students will be able to identify the parts of an asparagus spear, compare spears with different thicknesses, as well as learn about the asparagus in general.
  • Corn (PDF) K-3
    Students will be able to identify three types of corn, state the parts of corn, and understand the functions of the different parts.
  • Food Legends (PDF)
    Students become storytellers by creating legends about the origins of foods.
  • Heritage Banner or Quilt (PDF)
    To illustrate the legacy of the Columbian Exchange on American food customs, students assemble a banner or quilt.
  • On Location (PDF) 4-6
    Students map different characteristics of the school or garden site to help create awareness of the area.