Korematsu Gardens
Korematsu Gardens


Why Garden at School?

The garden is a living laboratory—a place to demonstrate, investigate, observe and learn.

Educational philosophers going back to the 17th century have promoted the use of gardening to achieve learning objectives and support the mental, emotional, and social development of youth. Students enjoy
gardening activities, and teachers and parents say that gardening programs:

  • Address multiple learning styles
  • Provide opportunities for interdisciplinary lessons
  • Improve environmental attitudes
  • Promote good nutrition and exercise
  • Teach patience and responsibility
  • Instill a positive work ethic
  • Increase students’ self-esteem
  • Build classroom relationships, improve teamwork, and strengthen school spirit
  • Beautify the environment

In addition to anecdotal evidence, a growing body of research-based literature supports the use of youth gardens as a beneficial teaching tool. Research has found that participation in youth gardening programs can have the following impacts on students:

  • Improve self-esteem and attitudes toward school
  • Improve social skills and behavior
  • Improve environmental attitudes, especially in younger students
  • Increase group cohesion
  • Improve interpersonal relationships
  • Increase interest in eating fruits and vegetables and improve attitude toward fruits and vegetables
  • Improve attitude toward vegetables and toward fruit and vegetable snacks
  • Significantly increase science achievement scores
  • Increase self-esteem, help develop a sense of ownership and responsibility, help foster family relationships and increase parental involvement
  • Improve life skills, including working with groups and self-understanding

When investigating the benefits of school gardens, it is helpful to divide them into four categories:

  • academic achievement
  • healthy lifestyle
  • environmental stewardship
  • community and social development