Life Lab

Life Lab cultivates children's love of learning, healthy food, and nature through garden-based education.

Programs of Life Lab

Life Lab Programs At-a-Glance


Garden Classroom Workshops

Every year, formal and informal educators from across the country come together in our Garden Classroom to see the magic for themselves. Come and join us for a workshop and learn new garden-based lessons and activities for children; network with other educators in the field; and enjoy a farm fresh meal in our lovely 2-acre Garden Classroom.

Off-Site Workshops

Life Lab has trained tens of thousands of educators in over 2,500 schools across the country. A kindergarten teacher recently wrote us, "Since bringing Life Lab to our school, my students are showing an improved respect toward the plants and animals on campus, an enthusiasm and curiosity to visit and learn from the garden, and expanded healthy eating practices." Bring Life Lab to your school or community and see what grows!

Pajaro Valley Project

Through community and school partnerships Life Lab is supporting school garden development and offering on-farm field trips at our Blooming Classroom site.

Field Trips

"This was the best field trip I have taken my class on in 17 years!" a teacher recently wrote us. Whether they're harvesting vegetables and cooking soup, tasting honey from the beehive, or feeding the chickens, kids and adults alike have a blast while learning about science, nutrition, natural cycles, and food systems during our field trip programs for preschool through middle school.

Camp

At Life Lab camps, kids spend whole days getting muddy, singing songs, making new friends, exploring the garden and woods, creating garden crafts, and cooking farm fresh food. Adventure awaits for our campers, ages 4-14!

Publications

From garden-based science curriculum to whimsical books for parents, Life Lab's award-winning publications are the go-to resource for educators and families interested in engaging children in gardens. We have something for everyone!

Web-Based School Garden Resources

Which lessons from The Growing Classroom are aligned with the third grade science standards? How do I host a bug race? Where can I find grants to support my school garden? Visit our website to find just about anything you might need to support your work in educational gardens.

Consulting

Life Lab staff is available year-round to consult with individuals, schools, and community organizations interested in establishing or enriching farm- and garden-based learning programs for all ages.

follow us on Facebook

Have you heard?! Life Lab is one of New Leaf Community Markets' recipients of their EnviroToken program for their Westside Santa Cruz store! So get your shopping on, bring your reusable bags, and donate 10¢ to Life Lab with every bag you use! Thank you, New Leaf!
#thankyou, #grateful, #ReduceReuseRecycle, #isupportlifelab
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

We are so grateful to be starting 2018 with such strong support! Because of so many generous gifts from our supporters like you, we surpassed our 2017 fundraising goal of $124,000, with all campaign donations totaling $125,835.

These funds will help make Life Lab field trip and summer camp programs possible for children from families and schools that could otherwise not afford them. We believe that ALL children deserve the chance to love learning, healthy food, and nature. Thanks to your support, this year we will serve even more children in Santa Cruz County and across the nation.

THANK YOU!

#beapartofit, #startingstrong, #changinglives, #isupportlifelab
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

Happy almost 2018, Life Lab fans! We are only $809 dollars away from reaching our $124,000 year-end fundraising goal! Before you ring in the new year, will you help us ensure a promising 2018? 100% of the funds necessary to do this important work come from grants and from individuals like you. Will you join us in ensuring that we can continue to deepen and expand our reach, so that even more children can experience the joy of loving learning, healthy food, and nature? Your tax-deductible gift made by midnight tonight will go directly to supporting our programs.
www.lifelab.org/donate
#beapartofit, #changinglives, #optoutside, #gardenbasededucation, #happynewyear
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

End the year making a life-chaning difference!
www.lifelab.org/donate
#beapartofit, #hopeforthefuture, #Happy2018!, #workingtogether
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

#beapartofit
www.lifelab.org/donate
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

With women and people of color still underrepresented in scientific fields, "I'm a scientist!" is a powerful statement coming from a 2nd grade girl in Watsonville. It came during a field trip to our Blooming Classroom field trip program. Young students look at flowers on living plants in the garden, see pollinators interacting with them, and pick a flower to dissect and explore its parts. Then they draw the flower and label all the parts they learned about in a lesson with our garden educators. This hands-on, garden-based science in action, and the feeling it gives students is exciting!

These ah-ha moments happen all the time at Life Lab, inspiring children's love of learning, healthy food, and nature. 100% of the funds needed to create these life-changing experiences come from grants and from individuals like you. Will you join us in ensuring that thousands of children each year can experience the joy of hands-on garden-based learning? Your tax-deductible gift will go directly to supporting our programs.

#beapartofit, #thisiswhatascientistlookslike, #creatingchange, #hopeforthefuture
www.lifelab.org/donate
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

We all know that hands-on experiences are critical to learning. No one would dream of teaching technology without computers: in fact, in many schools today they are mandating 30 minutes of screen time per student, per day. Why on earth with this understanding are we trying to teach earth and life science without giving them exposure to earth and life? School gardens are spaces--outdoor classrooms--where students can learn science and apply math and language arts, in a context that feels relevant to them. And what might happen if we elevated the status of hands-on, experiential, outdoor learning? What might happen if schools started mandating 30 minutes of dirt time per student per day? This would be time where they could apply what they're learning in the classroom outdoors to the world around them and develop a connection to it. Well that’s what we’re here to find out!
#beapartofit, #dirttime, #getoutside, #handsonlearning,
www.lifelab.org/donate
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

"This field trip was a fun experience that taught me how to eat healthy food in a fun way." -6th grader on a Feeling Fine with Fresh Foods Field Trip
Help grow the next generation of healthy eaters!
www.lifelab.org/donate
#beapartofit, #healthyeating, #isupportlifelab, #donate, #gardenbasededucation
... See MoreSee Less

View on Facebook

Watch us on Youtube

View Life Lab Channel

Life Lab has been the most innovative and relevant organization in this field. From providing the best curriculum to their cutting edge professional development, we have relied on Life Lab as our go to organization for support, ideas, and collaboration.
Rachel PringleSenior Director of ProgramsEducation Outside
Life Lab provides truly inspiring training. Their breadth of experience, joy for teaching, and commitment to sharing knowledge highlight the best practices in food and garden education.
Erica CurryTraining and Professional Development ManagerFoodCorps
Thank you for such a wonderful field trip experience! Your leaders did such a great job at keeping our kids engaged.
Sheila BrickenKindergarten TeacherSan Lorenzo Valley Elementary
Terry had another awesome two weeks at Life Lab. I think he learns more there than in any other part of his year. School is great, but he’s passionate (and often dogmatic) about what he learns there.
Tara NeierCamp ParentSummer camp mom