Students at Brindlee Mountain Primary School learn life skills, important values from new community garden

Northeast Alabama
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UNION GROVE, Ala. – Brindlee Mountain Primary School added a new program this spring that has blossomed already.  The school added a new community garden project which has given students the opportunity to learn about plants and gardening from start to finish.

“When they start to get their gloves on and they put their hands in the dirt, and then digging for potatoes and going down there and finding you know, a potato, the looks on their faces is priceless,” said David McCollum, the school’s principal.

Beyond the hands-on learning, the young students also learn another valuable lesson.  After the produce has been picked, it is shared with people who may not be able to afford it otherwise.

“They couldn’t buy it themselves, so why don’t you just give it to them?” said Cooper, a 7-year-old student.

“You can never be too young to learn how to serve other people. And we think that’s one of the timeless values that really it transcends age, it’s something that no, we don’t want them to wait until they’re in middle school to learn how to serve, teenagers are a different breed, maybe we should have started a lot earlier with more of them,” said McCollum.

The school hopes to extend the program through the fall, and ultimately expand the space.

“Some compost left, and some other lumber, and were going to expand, and then eventually we’d like to see this whole area filled with gardening beds,” McCollum added.

The first harvest will include strawberries, green beans, tomatoes and okra.

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