Life Lab

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

Our Garden Classroom

In 1998, Life Lab Science Program began dreaming about creating an outdoor learning center where people could experience garden-based education.  After much planning, research and design, construction began in April of 2001. Life Lab along with the UC Santa Cruz Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems co-manage the two-acre Garden Classroom. The Garden Classroom which is located on the UCSC CASFS Farm overlooking the Monterey Bay. Come visit!

Life Lab Garden Classroom Map and Scavenger Hunt

Download Garden Classroom Map and Guide

Download Garden Classroom Educational Elements which lists resources and ideas to replicate in your educational garden. View as a text document with live links.

 

Garden Classroom Tri-fold Brochure

Programs in the Garden Classroom
 What You’ll Find in The Garden Classroom
  • The Rot Zone: A compost demonstration area featuring over ten different composting and vermicomposting structures
  • A chicken coop with laying hens view our chicken cam  view our coop design
  • Birds, Bats, Bees, Butterflies and Beyond: A wildlife habitat featuring bird blind, plant tunnel, native plants, nectary, solar powered bird bath, many feeders, bat house bird viewing station, hawk perch, bird houses and herb bed
  • Pollination garden which features annual and perennial plants
  • Observational Bee Hive
  • Tropical/Dry Comparison Beds which feature plants with different adaptations for their environment
  • A mini bog environment which hosts a hoard of carnivorous plants
  • Central Spiral with plant petting zoo that features touchable plants of many textures and scents
  • Tea beds full of harvestable teas and herbs
  • Cut flower bed
  • Native plant meadow
  • Freshwater Pond featuring aquatic plants & waterfall
  • Tool shed and storage area
  • Sculpture, mosaic and other art projects in the garden
  • Weather station
  • Fruiting trees, shrubs, and vines
  • Root view box
  • Pizza bed
  • Track Trail: wildlife footprints tell stories in the concrete pathways
  • Recycled and salvaged materials used throughout demonstrate creative reuse
  • A Human Sundial
  • An Outdoor Garden Kitchen with Cob and Solar Ovens
  • Agricultural History Timeline
  • Vegetable row crop field for growing food crops
  • Benches for picnicking
  • A musical tree
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    It’s a wonderful thing that this kind of classroom was being implemented and being introduced to those students who wanted to learn something in there. It’s a good technique actually that they did for their students.

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THANK YOU to our many generous donors for your support yesterday on #GivingTuesday! This #ThankYouWednesday, we share our gratitude for our community who have joined us in growing healthy, inspired children! ... See MoreSee Less

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There is still time to make your #GivingTuesday donation! Let this joyful song put a smile on your face while you give! Please join us! www.lifelab.org/donate #GivingTuesday, #isupportlifelab, #donate
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#GivingTuesday is still going strong! Doesn't it feel great to know everyone working together can make a real difference? Be a part of the movement!
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Heading home soon? Take a minute and join with Life Lab in cultivating children's love of learning, healthy food, and nature... and of course some giggles along the way!
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"Wow, these seeds are so tiny! It's hard to imagine that they are going to grow into something!" student on a Life Lab field trip.
Your donation to Life Lab awakens curiosity in children, join us for for #GivingTuesday and plant seeds of hope for the future!
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We look to our work with children and understand that now, more than ever, we must raise our children to be loving stewards of the Earth. For the next generation to protect, defend, and preserve the Earth, they must understand and love it. A gift to Life Lab connects 400,000 children each year to the natural world, and allows them to discover their potential to care for it. YOU can influence change today by supporting Life Lab. Donate Now:
www.lifelab.org/donate #GivingTuesday, #isupportlifelab, #donate
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We believe that all children deserve opportunities for inspiring education, lifelong good health, and a deep connection with nature. Together with you, we are growing healthy, inspired children! Consider supporting Life Lab today for #GivingTuesday
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You've heard of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but do you know about #GivingTuesday? Here's a short video that explains this International Day of Giving. Can we count you in tomorrow?

#isupportlifelab, #GivingTuesday, #donate

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In this season of giving thanks, we wanted to take a moment to thank YOU for being a part of the Life Lab community! We are grateful for your work with us to grow healthy, inspired children. Together, we are planting seeds of hope for the future.

Life Lab is participating in #GivingTuesday, the global day of giving following Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Be a part of this growing movement by donating to Life Lab anytime between now and Tuesday, November 29th.
www.lifelab.org/donate
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Rachel Pringle

Rachel PringleSenior Director of ProgramsEducation Outside

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.

Erica Curry

Erica CurryTraining and Professional Development ManagerFoodCorps

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.

Sheila Bricken

Sheila BrickenKindergarten TeacherSan Lorenzo Valley Elementary

Thank you for such a wonderful field trip experience! Your leaders did such a great job at keeping our kids engaged.

Tara Neier

Tara NeierCamp ParentSummer camp mom

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.