Montessori Students Growing with their Garden

Member Spotlight: This is a guest blog from the Rawald family. They live in Texas and leverage the GrowIt! community as part of their Montessori curriculum. Most of their posts are from their 9-year-old daughter. Connect with gardenchild (tap from mobile) on GrowIt!.

Hi! We are the Rawald family. My husband and I have two daughters ages 5 and 9. We are a military family currently residing in Texas. My husband will retire soon, and we plan to relocate to Fort Lauderdale, FL.

When we moved to Texas, our town did not have a Montessori school for our children. We decided to homeschool using the Montessori curriculum, and it’s been successful for two years and counting. Our curriculum primarily focuses on natural science with a heavy emphasis on botany and zoology. I am not a “green thumb.” Teaching botany has been a learning journey for me as well as my children. I was elated when my sunflowers bloomed after months of failed attempts. I’ve come to find gardening to be a relaxing and challenging hobby. Before homeschooling, my plant care was limited to setting the sprinkler system.

Texas weather can be difficult for growing plants. Our weather is constantly changing without regard to the season, and temperatures routinely change by 30 degrees from one day to the next. Currently, it’s very hard to locate tangible examples of the botany lessons we are covering because our yard is brown, dry, and leafless. Thankfully, we found GrowIt! to help supplement our studies and provide the additional information my children seek to learn.

My older daughter loves learning about the plants she will be able to grow in Florida. She is currently working on a draft landscape design with GrowIt! projects. By using GrowIt, she accesses the information critical to planning a yard design. She is learning about the climate needs, seasonal impact, required care, and important factors for the plants which have peaked her interest. She also loves reading and engaging with the other GrowIt! member comments.

We are very happy to have found a way incorporate school lessons as a part of our upcoming move! My girls are so excited to learn about horticulture in Florida as Texas cannot sustain exotic plants or palm trees. I would recommend GrowIt for all parents as learning botany is vital to understand life on our planet. When a child plants a seed and cares for it as it grows into an adult plant, they gain respect for all living things, establish a great sense of pride and responsibility, and learn to love exploring the outdoor world. We need to get back to the basics for a healthier life and planet. We look forward to networking with other members and using GrowIt to help build a beautiful yard and garden!