Tipped to be one of the major initiatives for shaping the behavioural pattern of children, the Central Government has come up with a landmark decision for having kitchen gardens in all the schools.
In a direction, the Ministry of Human Resources has asked all the schools in the country to have a full fledged garden. The ministry has also issued guidelines for developing and maintaining kitchen gardens.
Feeling that it was one step towards inculcating the habit of growing fruits and vegetables on their own, the new programme would help the children to get first-hand experience of nature.
The guidelines has come up with several features such as “teaching students that a Nutrition garden can be set up anywhere, be it in school or an urban area, teaching students that every part of vegetable or fruits can be eaten, teaching them to think out of the box, teaching students to start a kitchen garden in their home on the lines of school gardens,
In the guidelines, the ministry has asked all the schools in the urban as well as rural regions to set up such gardens with the participation of teachers, children, parents and local people.
The Ministry says that kitchen garden is a great example of experimental learning and the children would develop many skills through this activity. “The beauty of watching something the children have planted is something untold. It helps in cultivating responsibility in them. Moreover, it will also help them to care for other living beings and also build in them team spirit and social skills.
On the many advantages, Kitchen garden will help students for building their learning capability as gardening is a direct form of education and highly practical. It not only helps a child to grow good food habits but also improves their health. The programme will help a child to become self sufficient.
The government has also asked the schools to establish Eco Clubs where they are not functioning now. As part of the methodology, the schools have been asked to earmark one or two hours a week for each class for Garden Kitchen. Apart from gardening, the schools have also been asked to encourage children to build their own vermicomposting pits and also to strictly avoid chemicals and other fertilizers.