Scrolling Headlines:

UMass hockey falls to No. 6 UMass Lowell for third time this season -

February 18, 2017

UMass hockey breakdown in final minutes of the second period on route to 5-2 loss to UMass Lowell -

February 18, 2017

Notebook: Jack Gibbs stars as UMass men’s basketball team drops game to Davidson Saturday -

February 18, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops another close game, falls to Davidson Saturday afternoon -

February 18, 2017

Local blogger Larry Kelley dies in car crash, remembered by community -

February 18, 2017

REPORT: UMass football to name Ed Pinkham as next defensive coordinator -

February 18, 2017

UMass students skip class to stand in solidarity with undocumented immigrants and refugees -

February 18, 2017

NPR Education Correspondent Eric Westervelt talks on future of education -

February 18, 2017

Faculty of journalism department discusses failures of journalism during Trump era -

February 16, 2017

UMass hockey prepares for third and final match-up against No. 6 UMass Lowell on Saturday -

February 16, 2017

Panelists hold discussion on embodying global coalitions -

February 16, 2017

Journalist speaks on criminalization of youth in the United States -

February 16, 2017

UMass women’s lacrosse heads to Florida in search of first win of 2017 -

February 16, 2017

UMass men’s lacrosse looks to get offense back on track against Ohio State -

February 16, 2017

Duquesne stomps UMass men’s basketball 96-66 in Pittsburgh -

February 16, 2017

UMass softball focuses on mental approach ahead of Madeira Beach Invitational -

February 16, 2017

UMass women’s basketball drops eighth straight in loss at Richmond -

February 16, 2017

‘50 Shades Darker’ steams up all windows in the nation -

February 16, 2017

’20th Century Women’ is a love letter to women across generations -

February 16, 2017

‘Santa Clarita Diet’ delivers on the laughs and the scares -

February 16, 2017

Permaculture spreads to local elementary schools

Two apple trees planted outside of Wildwood Elementary School in late October marked the start of a new partnership between Amherst elementary schools and the University of Massachusetts Permaculture Initiative.

The fruit trees mark the location of future permaculture gardens that the schools will be designing with the help of permaculture garden officials Ryan Harb, the Permaculture Academic Program coordinator, and Tripper O’Mara, an Auxiliary Services employee who recently graduated from UMass.

O’Mara will be working individually with the Wildwood, Fort River and Crocker Farm elementary schools  to help them design their own gardens. The gardens will be similar to the permaculture gardens located outside of the Berkshire and Franklin dining commons.

The permaculture gardens – which are types of gardens that try to mimic natural growing patterns – will then be planted in the spring.

“My main thing right now is just to get kids to understand why we’re doing this, why local food is really good,” O’Mara said.

He added that there is already a lot of excitement about sustainable agriculture at the schools. One of the goals of the partnership is to build on that excitement and integrate permaculture education into the classroom.

While working with the students to plant the fruit trees, O’Mara was impressed by the enthusiasm and knowledge the children brought to the project.

“I was absolutely blown away by how much even the kindergarteners knew,” he said. “They were telling me what I could and couldn’t put into the compost. And that was just really inspiring and exciting to know that these kids were already being taught at such a young level.”

The project – which is funded through a grant the from the Creative Economies Fund, a part of the UMass President’s Office – sprouted from a desire to find more direct ways to give back to the community, O’Mara said.

Harb “won some money to essentially take the idea of permaculture and sustainability education out into the local community,” O’Mara said.

“The way he wanted to do that was by working with the elementary schools.”

The Stockbridge School of Agriculture is also working on this project.

David Barnstone can be reached at dbarnsto@student.umass.edu.

 

Comments
One Response to “Permaculture spreads to local elementary schools”
  1. Ernest Rando says:

    We at Midwest Permaculture just love hearing stories about permaculture getting into schools. We find with a lot of the visits we get to our community that one of the benefits from permaculture designs is that they are just innately kid friendly. Creating spaces for exploration and childlike enjoyment is a piece of permaculture that can be applied anywhere, whether there is a garden or not!

Leave A Comment