Students are staying connected to nature and the Punahou campus through virtual visits to campus gardens.
Earlier this week, Eliza Lathrop ’92, the K – 12 garden resource teacher, tended to the School’s gardens and apiary, teaching students about botany, pruning, harvesting, beekeeping and more through virtual sessions. “The sixth graders especially had worked hard to get their garden to a beautiful cultivated state, and I didn’t want them to feel that it had disappeared or didn’t have meaning anymore,” said Lathrop, who is also an Academy English teacher.
In fact, students so diligently cared for the garden behind Griffiths Hall that it’s now exploding with produce – green beans, cucumbers, lettuce, okra and basil, to name a few. A recent harvest yielded 10 pounds of amethyst beans, which are green beans grown in deep shade of purple.
In another lesson, Lathrop and Mark Noguchi ’93, Punahou’s food curriculum specialist, incorporated the beans into a culinary chemistry lesson for Academy students.
The garden’s weekly harvest will be preserved and donated to people in need though Noguchi’s Chef Hui project, or shared with someone in the Punahou community, such as Grade 6 Dean Demetra Kaulukukui. “That way the students know what they cultivated is going towards keeping the community healthy,” Lathrop said.
It’s important for students to still pay attention to nature, Lathrop added, “even if it’s just these small touches through video so the kids know that the garden spaces haven’ t forgotten them.”