Nature in the city. This edible classroom at Carver Middle School is a firm introduction to Catapult’s fundamental concepts: wilderness, youth, leadership, and diversity. The Farm is how WYLD brings nature to the youth, bridging the gap between urban agriculture, nature connections, and the surrounding mountains, beaches, and other WYLDlife settings.
While they are on the “farm," students learn about nutrition & exercise, plant science, and service to others as they help choose what to plant, how to maintain the garden, enjoy the harvest, and share their work with their peers, families, and larger communities. The Farm also serves as a quiet place on campus to sit, read, bond with nature, be still, chat with friends at lunch, and watch wild life. Full of birds, bugs, butterflies, and the occasional evidence of raccoons, the Farm is a natural ecosystem that engages the hands, heart, mind, and sense of self.
Farm-to-forest students are invited to sign up for semester and year-long programs that bridge the California ecosystems from Urban gardening local mountains and ecosystems, via nature walks, weekend camping trips, and week-long summer excursions.
Any student can sign up for the Catapult program, and admittance is not based on grades or behavior, however, students must maintain a C plus to A plus GPA in order to continue in the program. Catapult incorporates creative writing and art projects into the curriculum to support a high level of academics and creativity important for a broad range of life choices in the later academic years.
A Word from Latasha Buck, Principal of Carver Middle School...
"Every week, students look forward to working in the garden and watching the fruits of their labor literally grow -- corn, pumpkins, herbs, flowers, etc! The garden reinforces community as our students share the garden's gifts with our staff and families.
Not only are our students learning about how to take care of our earth, but they are taking pride in the work they are doing in the garden. Our garden is also a space for our parent volunteers to give back to the school in a way that is accessible and fulfilling to them."