Wednesday, 29th May 2024

Wednesday, 29th May 2024

Eating your way through school: This edible garden gets students thinking and learning about sustainable living the hands-on way

27 Feb 2023

On the roof of Damai Primary School lies an edible garden where purple long beans, kaffir lime plants and chrysanthemums are grown. As the students tend to the plants, they learn sustainability practices and the benefits of growing their own food.

The best – and yummiest – part? They can harvest the vegetables to make yummy salads for the family.

By Owen Tan

At Damai Primary School, the edible garden is home to a wide variety of plants, from kaffir lime plants to purple long beans. The edible garden was built by community partner, The Edible Garden City, and fully sponsored by corporate sponsor Lam Soon.

An initiative under MOE’s Eco Stewardship Programme to nurture the next generation of stewards of the environment, Damai’s students get hands-on learning about sustainability and the benefits of growing their own food sources. Students take turns caring for the wide variety of plants, developing a sense of shared ownership and learning resilience in the process.  

“Students learn best when they apply what they have learnt into practice,” says Ms Tracy Tseng, Level Head Science. “They see how organic waste can be turned into useful fertilisers, as well as the process of getting their hands dirty and working as a team. This also enhances their appreciation of food, hence reducing wastage.”

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Many lessons and activities are conducted at the garden, where students also discover sustainability initiatives like urban farming and food composting.


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For Outdoor Education lessons, Primary 1 and 2 students capture pictures of flora and fauna that excite or interest them, and then do a show-and-tell for their classmates and family.


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During Science lessons, Primary 6 students explore how the decomposition of organic materials can create fertilisers for plants. Here, they are working together to assemble a compost bin for the garden.


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As custodians of the edible garden, the members of the school’s Environmental Science Club take the lead in ensuring the plants are growing well.


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Primary 6 student, Nur Fitri Aleeya Binte Bahari pictured here sowing seeds, shares how she felt a great sense of achievement planting her seedlings and watching them grow.


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Time to savour the fruits of labour! Students taste and harvest edible plants from the garden, such as the Mexican Tarragon, pictured here.

For more stories on schools’ green programmes:

There’s a rainforest in my school
Fresh ideas for sustainability
Little actions, big Earth-friendly benefits