Meet Malcolm and the Banks family, the farmers at Yellow Mountain Garden in Franklin, NC. Set the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains, you will learn about small farming, agriculture, and why Malcolm grows a little bit of everything. The farm is set in the middle of a wetland area so you will see a lot of radishes being grown. You will also learn what motivates Malcolm and his family to be farmers, their community visions, and goals to help support food deserts with their local crops.
Complimentary Growing Minds lesson plans and resources can be found below.
Lesson Plans & Resources
Learning about soil is a great way to get ready for gardening activities. The following soil-themed lesson plans and educational resources can be used in the classroom or adapted to the home garden:
- Soil Exploration (K-2): Through garden exploration, students will learn about the properties of soil and why soil is important to plants. They will closely observe soil and practice tallying and reporting results of soil experiments.
- Soil Temperature (K-2): Students will use thermometers to measure soil temperature and use the information to determine if the soil is warm enough to support plant growth.
- Soil Amendments (K-2): Students learn about the benefits of soil amendments and spend time recording their garden observations.
- Soil Jeopardy lesson plan (grades 4-5): Students use books and handouts to create game show questions about soils and then form teams and play the game.
- Worm & Compost Resource List
- Color your own soil ecosystem with this “Soil Rocks” coloring sheet by Asheville-based artist Kathleen Littlefield.
- You can find a great list of K-12 soil experiments and hands-on activities–including soil painting, soil colors, and soil properties–compiled by the Soil Science Society of America at soils4kids.org.
- Want to teach younger kids the basics about the different types of soil (sand, silt, clay, and loam)? Check out the “Types of Soil Song” performed by educator Crystel Hidalgo.
In the video, Farmer Malcolm mentions that they grow food to share with their community. Why do you think it’s important to do things together as a community? What community(ies) are you and your family a part of? What things do you do to support other members of your community(ies)? What are some of the benefits of farming together as a community?