Garden Learning Engagement

Thinking within and across many time scales is necessary to understand the complexity of socio-ecological systemsore deeply. As learners explore the garden place from multiple perspectives of time, you can also help them understand gardening as a set of human and more-than-human practices that are situated throughout history and communities by thinking around the following questions:

  • Who does gardening and for whom?
  • How has human decision-making shaped the land through gardening practices over time?
  • How do the land and land-based practices like gardening shape each other over time?


In this LE, we will build learner’s connections to places by considering the local and global histories of the garden and how they are connected to seasons and seasonal gardening practices. Learners will share and develop their sensemaking around the concepts of multiple histories, futures, and place. They will take a Histories of Places garden walk to consider how humans are, and have always been, a part of complex natural and gardened landscapes. Learners will explore how human decision making has changed this place over time and how changes to the land can and have impacted socio- ecological relationships. This exploration will support learners to think about future work that supports human and more- than-human thriving in this place. For example, learners might consider how garden pests are identified, managed and exist in relation to other garden species and kinds across space and time.


Connections to family and community gardening knowledges and practices

In this lesson, it is important to connect to learners’ prior knowledge, experiences and family practices to places around the garden. Your questions should position learners’ home-based knowledge as strengths for garden learning. Prompt learners to draw on these knowledge bases and experiences as they observe, wonder and draw on the Garden Exploration Walk. Some example questions could be: does anyone in your family garden, even if they live in another country? Why and how do they garden?

Optional: you can send home the Histories of Places family tool for learners to fill out with their families about their neighborhood.

Learning Goals

Learners will…

  • Share ideas and define histories, future and place
  • Understand how the garden can be seen from the Histories of Places timescales, and consider any other missing perspectives of time.
  • Describe what they observe and notice in the garden in relation to multiple timescales
  • Imagine more-than-human (animals, birds, insects, water, rocks, etc.) relationships in places
  • Describe human decisions that have occurred in gardens over time

Learning in Places Frameworks to Consider