October Newsletter
Racial Justice & School Gardens Resources
Returning to Classroom Instruction
Stay Engaged: Featured Connections
Featured Event: Maine Farm to School Network 11/5
Harvest of the Month
November Gardening Tips
Racial Justice & School Gardens Resources

In advancing MSGN’s mission to promote and support educational gardens for youth, it’s imperative we provide resources that assist garden educators in creating and fostering inclusive spaces where all students feel welcome and engaged.

Follow this link to our Racial Justice & School Gardens Resources from MSGN document. A FEW highlights for the most recent additions: 
  • National Farm to School Network's Movement Meeting - Food Justice is Racial Justice event recording
  • Prescott College's Food Systems Friday webinars. Up next: Growing Food and the Power of Community
  • National Ag in the Classroom has created a Diversity in Children's Ag Literacy Book List pdf | Matrix
If you have ideas for resources that should be included on this document, please let us know

Returning to Classroom Instruction
(whatever that may look like)

We know districts have been working so diligently on mapping out what this school year looks like and teachers have been adapting to instruct children in a number of different ways. We've compiled some information we thought might be helpful for our network of educators and school garden leaders. A few highlights are below, but please find a more extensive list here
  • Remote Learning & Online Resource Guide from Maine Ag in the Classroom has 5 pages PACKED with lessons, read aloud videos, games, and much more. 
  • Easy Garden and Cooking Activities to Do At Home: Back Pocket Learning - A list of simple, screen-free activities curated by Life Lab 
  • NBEC and state partners in Maine have developed an Outdoor Learning Quick Reference Guide for schools to answer common questions and offer inspiration. 
  • Outdoor Infrastructure Planning Strategies, Guidelines, and Cost Calculator (!)  here 
  • From California, Advancing Equity in an Era of Crisis: A Guide to Equity in Remote Learning
  • Design Principles for Online EE Programs from NAAEE here 
If you have ideas for resources that should be included on this document, please let us know

Stay Engaged
Featured Connections 

  • MEEA's Monthly Environmental Education Community Call - 10/28 10-11am
  • MAITC's Annual Meeting 10/28 3-5pm register
  • Virtual Meetings from Farm-Based Education Network here
  • UMaine Cooperative Extension is still hosting virtual events. See what's coming up here 
  • MOFGA continues to host a wide variety of educational opportunities online. The Common Ground Country Fair was virtual this year and you can still view the 2020 Common Ground Livestream Recordings!

  • ecoMaine's School Recycling Grant proposals are due 10/30 - great for growing a school composting program!
  • The 2021 Budding Botanist Grant is open and due 10/30
  • SeedMoney is accepting grant applications until November 12. More info here!
  • The next MAITC grant deadline is 12/14. Plan now! 
  • For assistance on writing grants, start with this: Helpful Tips for Promising Proposals, and find more funding opportunities here.

Outdoor Learning in Maine
  • Making the Case: This short video (less than 4 mins) can be used to demonstrate the power of outdoor learning! Consider sharing with parents, school leadership, school boards, funders, or whomever you're working with, to illustrate why outdoor learning is so critical for Maine youth. 
  •  Outdoor Learning Quick Reference Guide for Maine Schools
  • Outdoor Learning in Maine Schools Online Portal has resources and tools to support efforts in advancing outdoor learning, including supply lists, teacher training, funding opportunities, guidance documents, and more. 
  • Environmental Education & Outdoor Learning Providers Directory - Members of Teach ME Outside are building a new resource and are looking for organizations that do outdoor learning or environmental education in your community (camp, library, community organization, nonprofit, etc). Please share

And in case you missed it--
  • Garden Help: The UMaine Extension Victory Gardens for ME video series features helpful how-to for beginner gardeners--from managing weeds to how to water your plants. Still not getting your questions answered? Reach out to your local Cooperative Extension office for expert advice.
Featured Event
Maine Farm to School Network Strategic Planning 

Join Maine Farm to School leaders on Nov. 5th from 9am-12pm for virtual networking and interactive group activities to define the priorities of the Maine Farm to School Network for the coming years. Open to all Maine farm to school stakeholders; internet connection required. Because this is an interactive, participatory event registration is limited (and almost full!) so be sure to sign up ASAP if you plan on attending. More information at the MFSN website.

Can't attend this virtual event? Please share your perspective on the direction of the movement through the 10-minute survey

October is Maine Apples!
November is Maine Brassicas!

Local heroes disguised as nutrition directors and cafeteria staff are making sure youth stay fed across Maine. Catch up on all the details and learn how your school can participate by visiting the DOE website.
For even more HOM curriculum resources, Maine Ag in the Classroom has pages on the Teach ME website!


  • Harvest cool weather crops.
  • Utilize row covers to cover newly-planted hoop- or greenhouse crops on cold nights. Inside, seed spinach and mulch for spring crops.
  • Finalize your application for SeedMoney's Garden Grants by 11:59pm EST on November 12th.
  • Remove plant waste - discard diseased waste and compost the rest.
  • Rake leaves and pine needles and add to compost.
  • Mulch garlic, flower bulbs, new and recently divided perennials, raised beds, and barren spaces.
  • Build a compost system.
  • Take soil samples before the ground freezes and submit for testing at your local Cooperative Extension office.
  • Clean and store garden supplies. Drain rain barrels. Bring in hoses, sprinklers, fragile garden decorations or signage, etc. Wash and dry tools, seed starting materials, and pots. Store these inside, too.
  • Conduct inventory of what you have versus what you need for next season. If there are infrastructure or supplies you could use but don't have, continue planning out your proposal for MAITC's Grants due 12/14.
  • Plan cooking project using fall crops (carrots, potatoes, winter squash, garlic, and onions).
  • Research brassicas, the featured Maine Harvest of the Month bounty for November, with students. Use brassica seeds to grow microgreens! Using small planters (like paper cups), each student can have their own micro garden and can participate in taste testing!
  • Research season extension techniques. Brainstorm with the garden team about projects for the next gardening season. For season extension ideas:
    • MSGN's website
    • UMaine Cooperative Extension Bulletin #2752
    • UMaine Cooperative Extension Bulletin #1022
  • Read through MSGN's School Garden Coach Manual and identify areas of growth for your garden!
Check out our MONTHLY SCHOOL GARDEN CHECKLIST to learn more about what this month looks like in the garden! For even more information, try out these awesome resources: MOFGA's Planting CalendarFedco's Veggie Chart, and Johnny's Planting Calculator and Succession Planting Template.
Donate to MSGN
For more support on funding school garden projects: 

Helpful Tips for Promising Grant Proposals
MSGN funding expertise consolidated in one thoughtful guide for achieving grant opportunities from start up to follow up. Our "2 cents"  on funding your school garden.


School Garden Coach Manual
A collaborative collection of information resources, including ideas other schools have used to fund their garden efforts.
A HUGE thank you to our SPONSORS!
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