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Primary teachers' opinions and attitudes towards the use of school gardens in teaching

Tajda Hari (2022) Primary teachers' opinions and attitudes towards the use of school gardens in teaching. MSc thesis.

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    Abstract

    A garden, as we know it in general, is a natural habitat of plant and animal species beneficial for humans. It gets a wider meaning if we use it as a part of a school process and lessons. A school garden is a garden that is in the immediate vicinity of the school. It is intended for teachers and students to take care of it, learn from it and with its help learn about new content. Slovenian schools, especially rural schools, have used school garden for teaching as early as the 19th century. Also elsewhere in the world school gardens were used for teaching children about agruculture and self-sufficiency. After the use of school gardens in Slovenia was in decline for several decades, a few years ago their use began to rise again. Teachers are now getting help with the beginnings of gardening and garden care through various programs such as Ekošola and Šolski ekovrtovi. These programs provide different workshops for children and teacher education on gardening. Learning in the school garden strengthens students' connection with nature and has positive effects on better cognitive, social, academic and social development, as well as it encourages independence, creativity and awareness of the importance of their own food production. Due to the advantages offered by working in the school garden as part of the pedagogical process, we decided to research the opinions and attitudes of Slovenian class teachers towards the use of school gardens in teaching. In addition, we wanted to find out how often, when and in what content class teachers use it in teaching. We prepared an online survey questionnaire and sent it by e-mail to all primary schools in Slovenia. We received 165 completed questionnaires. The answers showed that the vast majority of class teachers teach in primary schools that have a school garden, while the rest would like this opportunity, mainly because of experiential learning. Slightly less than three quarters of teachers who have the opportunity to teach in the school garden also use it in teaching, between two and six times a year, mostly unplanned and within the framework of science subjects. The results of our research also show that teachers most agree that working in the school garden promotes a love of nature, practical learning and work, and offers the opportunity to spend time in nature. Despite the awareness of the positive effects that school gardening brings, the biggest obstacle for teachers in greater involvement of the garden in the lessons is the financial aspect of school garden care.

    Item Type: Thesis (MSc thesis)
    Keywords: school garden, primary school, primary teachers' opinions, lessons on school garden
    Number of Pages: 60
    Language of Content: Slovenian
    Mentor / Comentors:
    Mentor / ComentorsIDFunction
    doc. dr. Irena HerganMentor
    Link to COBISS: https://plus.si.cobiss.net/opac7/bib/peflj/102836483
    Institution: University of Ljubljana
    Department: Faculty of Education
    Item ID: 7142
    Date Deposited: 31 Mar 2022 09:27
    Last Modified: 31 Mar 2022 09:27
    URI: http://pefprints.pef.uni-lj.si/id/eprint/7142

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