School Gardens Program

Program Overview

OAEC’s School Gardens Program has been instrumental in establishing curriculum-based school gardens and ecological literacy programs in over 225 schools, including 170 in the greater Bay Area. Our School Garden Teacher Training & Support project, based out of our 80-acre demonstration site in western Sonoma County, is a place-based offering of this nationally-reaching program.

Since 1997, OAEC has trained over 650 teachers, administrators and garden coordinators from school across the country, with the resulting gardens serving approximately 75,000 students every year.

  • Click HERE to learn about our participating schools

Stretching in the garden

The core of OAEC’s Program is the 5-day residential summer training that supports school teams to create and sustain school garden based ecological literacy programs.

Through a combination of hands-on sessions and presentations of best practices by experts in the field, we teach participants the basics of organic gardening, permaculture, garden design, curricular integration, team building, community organizing, fundraising and more.

Learn more about our Teacher Trainings or APPLY NOW

  • 2014 5-Day Training Dates: July 7-11 at OAEC
  • To view a sample schedule for a School Garden Teacher Training session, see the attachment at the bottom of this page.

Handful of Seeds Cover PageFREE publication for educators!

A Handful of Seeds: Seed Saving and Seed Study for Educators by Tina Poles

This 91-page, illustrated guide includes lessons linked to California Educational Standards, practical information on seed saving in the school garden, and seed history & lore.

Click HERE to download the printable PDF (1.61MB).


Questions? Contact Vanessa Carter, School Garden Program Director at 707-874-1557, ext. 102 or


OAEC School Garden Teacher Training Sample Schedule.pdf56.43 KB