The Arizona connection! Americans in Glasgow. 28th September to 3rd October, 2019.

I was so excited to host Sallie Marston, Rachel Wehr, Blue Baldwin, and Moses Thompson from the University of Arizona’s Community and School Garden Program (https://schoolgardens.arizona.edu/about/staff ).

We achieved so much, worked hard, and shared lots of laughs! The purpose of their trip was strengthen our international partnership. We spent a full day at Boclair Academy across 6 different teaching periods. The Arizona team led two outdoor lessons which were so much fun (about 60 students involved in total). They also helped out in a further 4 different classes, and learnt a lot about guidance and counselling at the school (more on this later – there’s so much potential for a garden).

At the University of Glasgow, the Arizona team led a group presentation and Q&A on their school garden program (thanks all for coming!), followed by an afternoon workshop on ecological justice with geography undergraduates. This workshop involved students from across the degree program, and we’re already organising for working in the school garden and across our communities. We then headed to Baltic Street Adventure Playground – a fantastic greenspace!

Photos below from our time together….

No visit to Glasgow would be complete without a hike up Conich Hill…
The team at Rannoch Moor. It was actually sunny! Cheryl took the photo!
Photo from the Tuesday presentation. The talk was extensive, covering everything from the therapeutic to the political dimensions of school gardens.
In the East Quad!
Ecological Justice workshop at the University of Glasgow.
Baltic Street Adventure Playground! Growing and playing together in the community.
Thanks to Helen Trail for giving up her time, as well as Alistair!
Come down, Blue!
Outdoor learning begins at Boclair!
Mrs Bone listens patiently!
One of the tasks that Blue had her group do was to identify different components of the garden that triggered our different senses. Lots of fun!
Spider!
Rachel talks tarantulas!
Comparing each teams’ ‘sensory’ items they located in the garden – from seedpods to creepy crawlies!
Surprise!

Finishing off with a couple of photos of the garden in its present state – and a drone shot from a pupil!

13 September 2019: Elective class continues

Today was a glorious Glasgow day. Lots of sun! Victoria and I split the class into two and then rotated – half would help weed the front of the school, the other half came with me to sketch out their ideal school garden designs. Lots of creative blueprints! Bug hotels and ponds definitely came out on top of the wish-lists. Nice to use the benches I built, too – sturdy so far!

17-24 August, 2019: The Team Visit to Arizona!

Cheryl, Julie, Victoria, and myself spent a week in Tucson, AZ, shadowing members of the Community and School Garden Program – which is run out of the University of Arizona. It’s difficult to put into words how inspiring and uplifting this experience was for all of us–and how many wonderful ideas it gave us to take back to our own wee slice of the planet. We visited 3 elementary schools, 2 high schools, a University-run urban farm, and a community-run urban farm. We also spent many hours shadowing various meetings at the University of Arizona. Finally, we tried our best to understand the flora and fauna of the Sonoran desert to help integrate into international science experiments back in Scotland.

West of Tucson
The prickly pears were a favourite!
The amazing Manzo Academy
Native growing calendar
Worm bin!
So much of Manzo is pupil-run. It is so inspiring.
Definitely could not grow corn or cacti in Glasgow!
Still no sunburn…
The University-run Tucson Village Farm. What a place!
So many chickens!
Bees!
Amazing to get this much growth in the middle of the desert – and the middle of the summer!
Change the world – one carrot at a time!
Checking out another elementary school garden!
Cooling off in the mountains after a long day!
Helping out with the food literacy lab! Amazing to see the garden-classroom-stomach educational learning pipeline!
Turns out, plain basil!
Learning how to interpret seed packets and hands-on activities for teaching!
Rachel teaches how to use our hands to approximate various measurements.
Welcome to the Mid-Town Farm!
The goats were a hit – especially with Victoria!
Observing an ecology class taken by the amazing Jessie!
Scientific experiments in the garden – part of the agrovoltaics experiment. So cool!
Tucson High grows the starters for the rest of CSGP network. Amazing idea!
Aquaponics are cool!
Tuscon High’s farm club!
Group shot of the IGA!