Educational Garden and Greenhouse
The garden is an invaluable outdoor classroom. It provides an obvious and literal lesson in how to grow things to eat and where our food comes from while also cultivating environmental awareness and a relationship to the natural world that is crucial to our future. In recognition of the fact that this is now some of the most crucial information that human beings need going forward, curriculum planning for the environmental education of our students is essential. The Nantucket Lighthouse School Garden is a fundamental piece of this curriculum.
Our Educational Garden is comprised of 12 raised cedar beds for growing vegetables, herbs and flowers, generously funded by the Nantucket Land Council; a 17'x28' hoop house, funded by 2014 Nantucket Garden Festival Soirée guests; and a Pollinator Garden, funded by the Nantucket Garden Club.
Nantucket Lighthouse School’s Pollinator Garden is a protected sanctuary for birds, bees, butterflies and other insects. A certified Monarch Waystation, in the garden native species such as Orange Milkweed, Joe-Pye Weed, New England Aster, Angelica and Great Blue Lobelia are cultivated among other pollinators like Butterfly Bush, Coneflowers, Zinnias, and Lavender. The Garden is studied and maintained by Nantucket Lighthouse School students and enjoyed by the community, through events like the Nantucket Lighthouse School’s Nantucket Garden Festival, held annually in mid-July.
Connecting children with the natural world and allowing them to explore the outdoors, including our school garden, is an integral part of our integrated curriculum. Students work in the garden, weeding, watering and tending to the beds. Classes utilize the space for lessons in science, social studies, math, reading, writing, and painting. A living laboratory, children are growing, experimenting, observing, measuring, comparing, and learning to care for something that is important to the Nantucket Lighthouse School community and to sustainability efforts around the world. A garden is as much a story about the people who create it as it is about the garden itself. Nantucket Lighthouse School's Educational Garden is a story of tenacity, perseverance and a young school's dedication to sustainability, the natural world and multi-modal, hands-on learning.
Different classes are designated parts of the garden to coincide with class studies.
• Small School - Early vegetable crops
• Kinderclass - Wampanoag, The Three Sisters Garden
• Primary Class - Early Settler’s Kitchen Garden
• Middle and Upper Primary Classes – Vegetables
• The 5/6th Grades - Flowers as part of Earth/Botany studies
• The 7/8th Grades - Medicinal Herbs
A very special thank you to the following individuals for making our dream a reality:
Charity Benz, Nantucket Lighthouse School Trustee and avid gardener
Tiago Gomes, Nantucket Lighthouse School Parent and carpenter
Seth Rutherford, Nantucket Lighthouse School Parent; Waterworks of Nantucket
Sam Slosek, Nantucket Lighthouse School Parent; Moors End Farm
Jon Wisentaner, Nantucket Lighthouse School Parent; Wisentaner Inc.
Julie Wood, Nantucket Lighthouse School Parent; Hither Creek Gardener
Sunny Wood, Nantucket Lighthouse School Parent and artisan