Summer Day Camp
"Pocket-Sized Farms" mission is to combat child hunger, improve nutrition, and create innovative educational opportunities. This is achieved by utilizing the combined skills of children, camp staff, parents and neighbours to grow organic food gardens. These gardens will provide a stable source of food, learning and skills development for children.
What is Pocket Sized Farms?
Pocket Sized Farms is a free day-camp program for children aged seven to ten. It's located in Old East Common, an urban oasis in the Old East Heritage District. Environmental stewardship, nutrition and literacy are the foundational core of this outdoor learning centre/day-camp experience. Campers spend the morning in the garden tending to their plot and exploring the outdoors. In the afternoons we explore our community together, enjoying a wide variety of recreational, environmental and artistic learning experiences. We strive to create an environment that promotes healthy eating, learning-by-doing, teamwork, and an active lifestyle. Our program is specifically designed to benefit children by teaching them to meet some of their own nutritional, health, and learning needs. Pocket Sized Farms is a great opportunity for your child to learn new things, develop new skills and have fun!
If you are interested in learning more please call or visit LIFE*SPIN. Registration packages are usually available in March.
History of Pocket Sized Farms
The program began when LIFE*SPIN began working with local schools to create vegetable in school yards. Students were able to grow their own food and learn about the principals of agriculture.
"On the first day back to school, I forgot my lunch. So I went out to the garden and made myself a salad. I put spinach, lettuce, tomatoes and cucumbers in it. It was great!"
(Grade 4 Student- Sir Issac Brock PSF)
During this time LIFE*SPIN moved to their current location, 866 Dundas Street. Shortly after they relocated they lobbied for the abandoned building to be torn down and turned into a community garden. This presented a wonderful opportunity to enhance the school garden program and provide local families with free summer programming.
This new use of space benefited local families as well as the community as a whole. Small yards in this area were often underutilized or used for parking. This retrofit provided the community with an example of how these land resources can be used to enhance child nutrition, improve our health, build communitye ecologically rich and diverse yards. .
In 1999, after several years of gardening with children in London, Ontario, LIFE*SPIN produced the Pocket-Sized Farms Kid's Garden Book. Organized around the seasons, the book is designed for children to use as members of a school garden club or in their own backyards. The children's book is part of a package of materials that LIFE*SPIN developed to encourage schools to develop productive, inspiring gardens on barren school yards. The second part of the package is a Teacher's and Parent's Guide to Organic Gardening.
The Childrens' Garden Book - Pocket-Sized Farms sells for $10 each or $8.50 each for five or more copies. The Teacher's and Parent's Guide to Organic Gardening will sell for $25 each.
Contact LIFE*SPIN (519) 438-8676 to order copies or send cheque (payable to LIFE*SPIN) to LIFE*SPIN, P0 Box 2801, London, ON. N6A 4H4, Canada.