By Pia Spilke Shlomo
We are so excited to introduce tower gardens to NSHA, and they are already overflowing with bountiful produce!  Tower gardens are the next generation in urban gardening.  They are bringing an innovative STEAM curriculum to schools across the country in the most progressive classrooms. A tower garden is a vertical, growing aeroponic system that grows vegetables, herbs, fruits and flowers in less than three square feet—indoors or out.  Perfect for classroom growing, we can’t wait to get our kids engaged in project-based learning that brings life to their lessons.  Here at NSHA, we’ll use our tower gardens to provide firsthand demonstrations about photosynthesis, plant structure and reproduction, engineering of the tower structure, sustainability, aeroponic vs. traditional growing and many other related lessons.  It’s no wonder that tower gardens in classrooms have been shown to improve student performance and inspire and excite students as they experience the growth and lifecycle of these plants and experience and enjoy firsthand the process and product. Herbs, veggies, plants & flowers growing in the learning space will also encourage healthy habits inside and outside the classroom.
The tower garden was originally designed as part of Disney’s hydroponic garden that is a main attraction at Epcot Center.  This garden supplies all the produce to the restaurants in all of Epcot.  Juice Plus, an international nutrition company, bought the patent and introduced the Tower Garden to homes and schools around the country and the world.  It stands in thousands of kitchens as a personal garden in addition to blossoming all the over the education scene and many other areas as well.
With multiple towers to go around NSHA, you can expect many tower garden spottings during the year.  Anyone who is on the Cherry Lane campus can pop into Mr. Sigals’ office for a friendly visit to see it in action as it grows and livens up the main office.  From there it will travel on its own set of wheels to various spots around the building including the lunchroom and science classrooms.  On the Old Mill Campus, the tower garden will make its appearance in the science lab where it will be incorporated into the science curriculum. Stay tuned for updates on the newest & greenest members of the NSHA family #TowerGardensbyJuicePlus  #goinggreen #STEAMatNSHA #NSHApride