A new preschool is teaching children gardening and urban farming, and many of their classes are hands-on, working on an actual farm.
Edoardo Capuzzo Dolcetta and a team of other designers have been working to bring children closer to nature during their studies and teach them skills that they will actually need in the real world.
Dolcetta’s team, which includes Gabriele Capobianco, Davide Troiana, and Jonathan Lazar, recently gained attention for their ideas when they won the AWR International Ideas Competition.
They won the competition with a proposal called “Nursery Fields Forever,” which is a classroom and lesson plan that merges farming education with academic learning.
“We think that kids should enjoy nature. So we designed this strange school: No classrooms, but open spaces where vegetables grow inside and animals can come in too. It’s a mixing of the two things, school and nature,” Dolcetta said.
“We tried to make a different way to learn. So not reading a book, or listening to a teacher, but experience directly based on practice. A typical school has desks and chairs—in our school, there are not these things. And there’s the freedom to stay inside or go outside,” Capuzzo added.
The layout of the school is designed in such a way where the schoolhouse overlooks the farm.
This may be one of the most ambitious plans for a farming pre-school so far, but this is actually not a new idea. There is already a similar school that exists in Norway, and an urban farm school that recently opened in Asheville, North Carolina.
Also, group called Tiny Trees Preschool from Seattle, Washington will be starting a new program in September of 2016 that will teach outdoor preschool classes in 9 different parks around the city.
The Urban Farm School in Ashville is a bit different because it is primarily for older students and not preschool students. However, teaching such skills to children at a young age will undoubtedly make it easier for them to carry those skills on to adulthood.
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