Congratulations to the 2022 Little Seeds Pollinator Pals Grant Winners!
The Little Seeds Pollinator Pals Grant presented by Little Seeds Kids and KidsGardening is designed to support youth garden programs interested in preserving and creating pollinator habitats to help rebuild declining pollinator populations. The following twenty programs will be awarded a check for $500 to support the development of new and expansion of existing pollinator gardens in communities across the United States.
2022 Little Seeds Pollinator Pals Winners
A.B. Williams Elementary (Savannah, GA)
This new pollinator garden space at A.B. Williams Elementary will engage first through fifth graders in pollinator activities. Specifically, the garden will provide second graders an opportunity to participate in the Great Pollinator Count as part of their upcoming project-based learning unit.
Chester Elementary School (Chester, NY)
Chester Elementary’s new pollinator garden will be designed and constructed by fifth-grade students during a year-long project-based learning unit. Being located in the Black Dirt region of Orange County, NY, the students are very aware of the connection between farms and the food they eat and the new pollinator garden will be an outdoor learning space to learn the role pollinators play in our ecosystems.
Gates Chili Middle School (Rochester, NY)
The new pollinator garden is part of an outdoor classroom that has been designed by students at Gates Chili Middle School to create a habitat for butterflies and other pollinators. The mission of the outdoor classroom is to provide a natural, inclusive space for students to be educated in all content areas, practice social-emotional learning, and have opportunities to manage and explore the space.
Harrah Public Schools (Harrah, OK)
At Virginia Smith Elementary, in Harrah Public Schools, the kindergarten and special education classrooms will develop a new pollinator garden space to teach their students all about bugs. The mission is to connect their science program to the pollinator space, teaching students where pollinators obtain their food and that plants need water and light to live and grow.
HeartBound Ministries (Forsyth, GA)
As part of the Plants in Prison program, run by HeartBound Ministries, youth at the Burruss Correctional Training Center will create a new pollinator garden and restart a beekeeping program. The program will equip students with the knowledge, skills, and confidence needed to grow their own food and gain employment in the green industry upon their release. The students will also receive 18 college credits from Central Georgia Technical College and a Certified Landscape Technician certificate.
Kaleidoscope Preschool (Philadelphia, PA)
The new pollinator garden at Kaleidoscope Preschool will allow students to learn about other pollinators and the interconnectedness of our local ecosystem. Every year, the Kaleidoscope Preschool program raises caterpillars and the students watch them transform into chrysalides and then butterflies. The new pollinator garden will extend this learning beyond raising butterflies to a year-long exploration of pollinators.
Milwaukee Public Schools (Milwaukee, WI)
At Clement Ave School, with Milwaukee Public Schools, an established school garden helps divert stormwater runoff, mimicking natural water systems and the new pollinator garden will be part of the existing garden and bioswale. The garden program’s mission is to serve as a space to learn science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) and community engagement.
Mt. Eden Children's Academy, PS555 (Bronx, NY)
The whole school at Mt. Eden Children’s Academy will participate in the pollinator garden program. First graders will connect with students in Mexico through the Journey North program, exploring the migration, patterns, and life cycle of the Monarch butterfly. Fifth-grade students will research pollinating plants, measure plant growth, create timelines, and observe how it changes during the seasons. Students on the autism spectrum and with social and emotional challenges will use the garden as a sensory and learning experience during science period. The science teachers will create a student-to-student garden mentor program, and the after-school program will use the garden for science and wellness studies.
Nichols Elementary (Barboursville, WV)
The Viking Garden and Walking Trail Program at Nichols Elementary will add a pollinator garden to the existing school garden space to extend the science curriculum. Further, fifth-grade students will serve as "Garden Mentors and Tour Guides" for the PreK students, and students in grades K-2 will go on nature walks as a "Brain Break" activity several times per week. The gardening space will also provide an inviting environment for quiet reading, writing, art, and reflection.
Palm Desert Charter Middle School (Palm Desert, CA)
The school garden at Palm Desert Charter Middle School will add a pollinator garden space to the existing garden that will include local, indigenous plants that facilitate pollination. Their goal is to provide an environment to attract local pollinating beetles, bees, hummingbirds, butterflies, and more. Seventh-grade students will spend time weekly in the garden as part of their science curriculum, after-school garden club students will care for the maintenance of the garden, and a foods class will use the garden to enhance their lessons.
Pine View Association (Osprey, FL)
The Artist’s Garden at Pine View Association has a mission to engage students through art and science education. The theme of the Artist’s Garden is a “riot of colors” and is intended to be a visually engaging garden featuring flowers of all colors, sizes, shapes, and bloom times strategically throughout the year to provide a year-round food supply for pollinators. The garden will integrate flowering trees, shrubs and wildflowers, pollinator habitats, and 3D art sculptures. In addition to the art education goals, Pine View teachers will use the Artist’s Garden as an outdoor classroom for science education.
Ponderosa State Park (McCall, ID)
The new pollinator garden at Ponderosa State Park will include native, drought tolerant, and firewise plant species to educate the public on the important role that pollinators and native plants play in our ecosystem. The park will educate youth attending their outdoor preschool, a K-12 program in partnership with Idaho’s McCall Outdoor Science School, and a Junior Ranger Program about how bees, butterflies, beetles, moths, bats, and bird species play important pollinator roles.
ReGreen Springfield (Springfield, MA)
ReGreen Springfield, in partnership with the US Forest Service and the City of Springfield Parks Department, will create a new pollinator garden at Riverfront Park. Through the program, “Off to the Great Outdoors!,” youth will learn about pollinators, climate change, environmental stewardship, and sustainability. Through this process, they hope to empower youth to be change-makers and positive influencers in the community.
Stonehurst STEAM Magnet Elementary (Sun Valley, CA)
The new pollinator garden at Stonehurst STEAM Magnet Elementary will be a part of the existing garden program and curriculum. The second and third grade classes will take lead on planting and caring for the new garden, with the goal to become a Monarch Waystation. The students will collect data, document the project, and create educational stations, accessible via a QR code, to share their learning with the community.
Sunnyside High School Habitat Restoration Project (Tucson, AZ)
At Sunnyside High School, students in the 9th grade biology class, 10th-12th grade environmental class, and 9th-12 grade STEM club will help build and maintain the pollinator garden. The school will partner with the National Phenology Network and the University of Arizona to monitor the phenology of the plants and pollinators. Students will collect data and handle the maintenance, mulching, soil testing, watering, and collection of seeds within the pollinator garden space.
UChicago Charter School NKO Campus (Chicago, IL)
The North Kenwood/Oakland (NKO) Elementary Garden will grow sustainable connections between children, food, and their environment, as well as fostering sustainable connections between the school and local community. The school will partner with a nearby high school’s internship program where high school students will work with the elementary garden club students to develop plans for and install the pollinator garden. This partnership will create a pollinator corridor in the south side of Chicago, and will teach about the importance and impact of pollinators and pollinator habitats.
Valley Elementary (Yucaipa, CA)
The pollinator garden at Valley Elementary includes raised garden beds, a certified Monarch Way Station, and multiple fruit trees. To improve the pollinator garden, the school will plant native pollinator and butterfly host plants so that students can learn about plants and insect life cycles up close and personal, encouraging them to love and protect the planet.
West Jackson Elementary School (Jefferson, GA)
The West Jackson Elementary School 2nd Grade Pollinator Garden, established in May 2021, will be improved by the addition of more pollinating plants, as well as water features and shelter for birds, bats, and insects. The garden program will install a bird feeding station, bird houses, bat boxes, and a large bee hotel. The pollinator garden will also provide an environment to inspire a multitude of activities in all elementary grade levels that facilitate full standard and content integration.
Westdale Middle School (Baton Rouge, LA)
The outdoor classroom garden at Westdale Middle School will provide middle schoolers the opportunity to learn through hands-on, project-based activities about the importance of pollinators and their habitats, methods of friendly urban agriculture, local and regional ecosystems, environmental sustainable practices, and the appreciation for natural resources. The students will create a pollinator garden with different species of native flowers, shrubs, wildflowers, and trees. One goal of the program is for students to transfer the knowledge gained in the pollinator garden into their homes, subsequently creating practical changes that will generate opportunities for the development of local pollinator spaces in students’ homes and communities.
Woldumar Nature Association (Lansing, MI)
The mission of the garden program at Woldumar Nature Association is to establish a self-sustaining native pollinator garden attracting important pollinator species to the area. The garden and accompanying program, “What’s the Buzz,” will be used to teach environmental education principles to youth and their families. Students will learn the differences between native and invasive species, assist in the pollinator garden preparation, plant seeds and seedlings, and engage in nature observations through the study of plants and animals.