Living Animals in The Garden

Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly Feeding from the Butterfly Bush

Swallowtail Caterpillars Feeding on Dill

The Honey Bee - She is working

This workshop starts with a read-aloud about animals that live and work in our gardens: Bees, Spiders, Butterflies & Caterpillars, Worms, Praying Mantis, Grasshoppers, Crickets, Hummingbirds, Robins, Ladybug Beetles, Bumble Bees, Snakes, Rabbits, Aphids, Snails, and many others.  Mentors show pictures, books and projections of these animals for the students to examine. Mentors explain that Gardens are home to many living creatures, both plant and animal.  Mentors explain that some of our Organic Teaching Garden plantings are grown specifically to attract certain animals, because without them our plants wouldn’t produce the food we need.  Mentors explain why Bees might be attracted to us, because they might, for a moment, think that we are a flower.  We may be wearing bright colors.  Our soap or shampoo might smell like a flower.  Mentors explain that if we are careful, and peaceful in our gardens, the Bees will most likely not disturb us as long as we do not disturb them.  Mentors explain what “Beneficial” means, and why most Spiders, Bees, Birds, Snakes, Butterflies, Praying Mantis, Worms, and decomposing insects are incredibly helpful to making our garden grow.  Students are given worksheets and break into smaller groups to go outside to the gardens where they are asked to identify seven living animals, in our gardens, and if they are beneficial to our garden or if they will be harmful to our garden.

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