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Junior Master Gardener pilot project

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Junior Master Gardener planting

The Master Gardener Program collaborated with Extension's 4-H program to pilot the Junior Master Gardener 4-H SET (Science, Engineering, and Technology) project in 2009. The pilot was generously funded by a grant from the Minnesota Nursery and Landscape Association (MNLA) Foundation.

There were six expectations of each site.

  1. engage at least 10 youth in a minimum of 8 learning sessions
  2. involve a local MNLA member sponsor
  3. incorporate a science experiment and a service project
  4. use technology to teach, communicate and report
  5. utilize JMG curriculum and have some type of teaching garden
  6. participate in evaluations

Six counties were selected to participate; two had multiple sites: Clearwater, Crow Wing, Olmsted (2), Sherburne, Stearns (2), and Winona. Seventy-two participants attended one of two trainings. Each site received JMG materials and a $125 grant for supplies.

All sites were successful. Data from the pilot evaluation shows that in total:

  • 125 youth enrolled in the project; 97 youth completed the entire project
  • 30 percent of youth participants were non-white/persons of color; 70 percent were white/Caucasian
  • 87 youth were new to the 4-H program

1 Comment

Cathy Evans said:

Dear Extension People,

It's great to see 4-H continue and, hopefully, flourish in this capacity.

I work in White Bear Township (Ramsey County) at Otter Lake School where I'm a year-round, part-time Extended Day assistant leader. We started a garden in 2008 (5'x15' which has grown now to 5'x30') which includes spring bulbs, annual flowers and vegetables. We're in the process of adding a separate sunflower/pumpkin patch on the perimeter of our athletic field this spring if all the 'go-aheads' come through. We try to sow our own seeds indoors, plant them outside, harvest the vegetables, use them in our cooking and baking projects, and sell our excess in our garden sale in the fall.

Our program is very low-key, simple, the children (who want to) and I do all the (above) 'work'. It's been a fun few years and the kids have enjoyed the 'fruits' of their labor:-) We don't have much time to dedicate to it (the garden) however- maybe a 1/2 hour each morning or every couple of mornings.Do you know of other schools who have gardens in the north Metro area that may be similar to ours? It would be nice to connect with them.

Thanks for any information and support,
Cathy Evans

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