Food Forest as a Teaching Resource
The Melbourne Inner North Transition Initiative (MINTI) organised the extension of the FSNLC community garden in to a foood forest, but Joanne Nataprawira, a Permaculture Design graduate, and now part of The Desert Echo had the inspired idea of combining the garden with a walk-through education experience using flip top panels to show:
- where in the world a plant comes from
- what type it is – where in the canopy it grows
- what conditions it prefers, and how much water
- how it propagates, how more are grown
- how we harvest it
- how we use the plant, its seeds, and fruit
These are used in three ways.
Casual Visitors – the Flip Tops can be used as people walk through the Food Forest, following the paths, or just to identify a particular plant.
Educational Visits – there is a weather proof letter box next to the large display board. It contains laminated double sided guides to the Food Forest. School and family groups use these for more structured walks through the plants.
Pre-Visit School Activities – The same guide pages are also online on the FSNLC site, with a set of Teachers Notes that could be used in any Nature lesson or School Garden activity.