by Jonah Holland, PR & Marketing Coordinator, Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden
I had an amazing time in the Garden last month with these fine young folks from Richmond Public Schools’ Chimborazo Elementary School‘s 3-year-old Head Start class. We read a story about animals and then looked for birds and other creatures in the Garden with our “binoculars.” As we explored the garden we decorated our binoculars with leaves and other treasures. The Garden provides this educational outdoor experience for these students through our Young Buds program. We had a great time looking at all the plants, and the children especially liked “petting” the lamb’s ear (Stachys byzantina). We even flew through the Garden like birds!
My husband, Dr. Holland, happens to be the teacher for this class, so I was excited to meet his students and share Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden with them. Seeing the Garden through a child’s eyes is something special. None of the children had been to Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden before, and there was so much to take in. If you haven’t been here before (and even if you have) the Conservatory makes quite an impression. One little girl squeeled with delight, “Ohhhhhh a castle!” And all the Children looked up and ooh-ed and ahhh-ed.
Working here, day after day, I always appreciate the Garden and I try not to take the beauty for granted — ever. But hanging out with this group for the day, there was no mistaking their unbridled joy. It was contagious. Have you ever been with 17 3-year olds as they see a real turtle for the first time in their life? It’s wonderful.
Programs like this are made possible because of generous support from our donors. Thank you to all of the individuals that donate to Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden’s Annual Fund.