Thursday, February 25, 2021

Virtual Garden Club

I admitted it to the teacher in an email yesterday.  I got nuthin'.

I'm never at a loss for things to do when we're in the garden.  Finding interactive projects for virtual garden club is more of a challenge.  We've been meeting since October, once a week for 30 minutes.  After photosynthesis and the parts of a plant and several adventures with seeds in red Solo cups, this week I came up empty.

Searching for online garden activities for kids introduced me to a wide variety of video games and apps to download !!!for free!!!!!  Virtual lesson plans were no more helpful.  I was up at 6:30, the sun hitting unfamiliar angles as I sat at the desk, hoping for an answer.

In the end, I went with my strengths - words.  Favorite Poems Old and New selected for boys and girls by Helen Ferris has been with me since elementary school.  The binding is collapsing, the cover was repaired while I volunteered in the kids' high school library, and that plastic overlay is now adorned by one of my granddaughter's gems.
I found Dandelion by Hilda Conkling.  I found a photo of a single dandelion stalk in a field of grass.  Together with my dramatic reading, the kids were amused.

O little soldier with the golden helmet,
What are you guarding on my lawn?
You with your green gun
And your yellow beard,
Why do you stand so stiff?
There is only the grass to fight!

The one the teacher and I liked the most garnered the most glazed eyeballs.

Lodged (by Robert Frost) 

The rain to the wind said,
"You push and I'll pelt."
They so smote the garden bed
That the flowers actually knelt,
And lay lodged--though not dead.
I know how the flowers felt.

Robert Frost should probably be reserved for adults.  But Frost led me to Auden, and this loveliness.  The words in bold needed explication.  

Their Lonely Betters (by W H Auden)

As I listened from a beach-chair in the shade
To all the noises that my garden made,
It seemed to me only proper that words
Should be withheld from vegetables and birds.

A robin with no Christian name ran through
The Robin-Anthem which was all it knew,
And rustling flowers for some third party waited
To say which pairs, if any, should get mated.

Not one of them was capable of lying,
There was not one which knew that it was dying
Or could have with a rhythm or a rhyme
Assumed responsibility for time.

Let them leave language to their lonely betters
Who count some days and long for certain letters;
We, too, make noises when we laugh or weep:
Words are for those with promises to keep.

We had some fun with the Robin-Anthem which was all it knew, and then we were through.  

I'm looking into a guest speaker for next week.


  1. I'm impressed by your dedication to this project and how long you've been at it. Our neighbors used to coach kids with reading difficulties, but Covid put an end to that.

    1. They heal my heart. I'll do whatever it takes to stay connected.

    2. I truly believe that virtual storytelling has done more for me during this pandemic than it's doing for the children. The teachers appreciate seeing another adult, too.

  2. I don't knowhow much your littles appreciated this, but I did!

    1. Thanks! I posted them to hear something like this!


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