Enrichment » Garden


Colfax Garden of Eatin’

Colfax has our very own organic garden where students learn about the cycle of food as they plant, grow and eat radishes, kale, snap peas and more.

The original garden has been around for over 25 years and was constructed by a devoted group of parents who understood the connection between gardening and learning. It was known as the “Garden of Eatin’" and had 11 garden beds. It was maintained by parents and students, but as time went by, the students and teachers spent less and less time in the garden, and it became overgrown with weeds.

For a while, preschool students used a couple of the beds to plant fresh food, but it was not until 2002 when the garden was revived! Ms. Stephens began using it as a tool for teaching English to English Language Learners and today it is still used by our students with special needs.

After that, the garden was expanded so that all students and classes benefit from this hands-on learning, with each class having their own organic garden plot that they plant and maintain. Students also help to keep the entire area safe and clean as part of our bigger Colfax school garden community.

In 2010 with the support of a grant from Tamar Galatzan’s office and Lowe's, and our wonderful volunteer workforce, we expanded the garden to include a washing and vegetable preparation area. Using reclaimed wood beams, we installed seating to create an inviting outdoor classroom space. Additional composting bins were also installed so our students could learn about recycling, reusing, and mending the soil before planting.

And we now have a dedicated garden teacher who, with the help of parent volunteers, guides the students to not only plant, grow and eat organic food, but to also care for the planet as well as each other with mindful lessons in community, respect and working together. Our staff and all supplies in the garden are fully funded by parent donations to PACE.

Benefits: Plant-based education has incredible potential to enhance the academic curriculum and classroom learning culture. Our school garden requires a child’s intellectual, emotional and social engagement with things that must be measured, counted, weighed, arranged, planned and cared for. It fosters student’s curiosity by providing a natural context for hands-on investigations. It provides a multi-sensory environment that supports a diverse range of learning styles and abilities. Most of all it yields gratifying and often surprising results for our students.

Come and check out the garden, hopefully you will pick a time when students are out there and you can see for yourselves the excitement and enthusiasm that abounds in the garden!  It’s pretty amazing.


Colfax Garden
Staff Directory
Dana Stephens Coordinator
Whitney Wade Garden Aide
Snap Peas
garden food