School Groups

Intergenerational Landed Learning Program

In 2013, the Friends of the Gardens initiated a Pilot School Vegetable Growing Project based on the Intergenerational Landed Learning (ILL) Program set up at UBC farms over a decade ago. This is the first and only such program available in the South Okanagan.

This project involves hands-on curriculum-based outdoor learning classes (Grades 3 and 6) onsite at the Summerland Ornamental Gardens with South Okanagan elementary schools. The classes use the natural environment and food gardens as learning spaces for cross-curricular activities and interdisciplinary study. The project brings together school children, teachers, Friends of the Gardens volunteers and garden staff along with community members to plant, grow, harvest and prepare food on site. Our specific ILL Project is being developed to enable both French immersion and English language classes to participate.

Our ILL core program team is made up of educators, curriculum development specialists, master gardeners as well as scientific experts, an environmental stewardship team leader, a head gardener, Garden’s operations manager and an assistant gardener. Our team members are committed to helping school children learn and practice ecological sustainability concepts by partaking in organic and naturalistic gardening. Our ILL program incorporates lessons about soil, seeds and planting, pollinators and plant adaptations, harvest/sharing and environmental biomes. The program also delves into issues such as food security, food sustainability, healthy soil, beneficial insects, companion planting and the principles of xeriscape gardening and water conservation best practices.