Caldwell Elementary School
Caldwell Elementary School serves children from Kindergarten through Grade 5 and is near downtown McKinney.
This Title I elementary school is a dual-language campus populated by a high percentage of children from low-income households. The on-site gardens at Caldwell Elementary School were established in 2010 by Caldwell Elementary School, the Collin County Master Gardener Association and First United Methodist Church of McKinney.
Master Gardeners host a free monthly Caldwell Elementary Garden Club:
- to teach children, who often live in a food-insecure environment, the benefits of growing and eating healthy foods.
- to provide high-quality vegetables and herbs for students in productive raised beds.
- to improve both diet and awareness of healthy eating among participants and families.
- to expose children to all aspects of gardening including: planting seeds, identifying plant parts, planting plants, propagating plants, how to garden in containers, how to properly use garden tools, plant life cycle, insects, pollinators.
- to teach the Earth-Kind® principles of water conservation and the minimal use of insecticides and fertilizers.
Master Gardeners provide children and their families with research-based education on sustainable horticultural practices and environmental stewardship. Master Gardeners prepare a science-based curriculum based on input received from Caldwell staff and committee members and also utilize the Junior Master Gardener Curriculum.
Master Gardeners lead students through structured hands-on gardening lessons. Students have garden diaries, and their entries provide valuable feedback. Produce is weighed and divided for distribution to students. Over the summer, produce distributions continue to benefit students. Year-round, Master Gardeners manage detailed planting schedules, irrigation, and harvests.