Abel was very excited. Today was his first day of school. He was 5 years old, and he was he was on his way to kindergarten. Yesterday, Abel’s dad told him that the word Kindergarten was a German word that meant children’s garden. Abel was so excited to spend a day in the garden. He loved being outside! He loved trees, sunshine, grass, flowers and even bugs! Abel said goodbye to his dad, and walked into the school yard. He saw lots of children playing, and went to make friends. He met Benny and Ginger, Kyle and Betty, Tommy, Billy, Clare and David. Wow, thought Abel, I love children’s garden! After a while, the Miss Monroe, their teacher, rang a bell and all the kids lined up. They went into a building, and walked by a lot of rooms. They stopped at a door, and went in. Inside, Abel saw tables, chairs and a blackboard. Abel was sad. He realized that he would have to spend the whole long day in this room. Even though he had made friends, Abel loved outside more than anything, and he missed the trees, sunshine, grass, flowers and even the bugs!
That night, Abel had an idea and he asked his dad to help him. The next day, he took a big plant to school, the day after that, he took some flowers in a pot, the day after that, he took a green shaggy carpet, and the day after that, he took his ant colony. Every day Abel brought something to school that reminded him of the outdoors. Soon, Benny and Ginger, Kyle and Betty, Tommy, Billy, Clare and David started bringing plants and flowers to class. Mrs. Monroe joined the fun and hung pictures of bugs from the ceiling!
Very soon the class room looked like a beautiful garden. Abel and his friends were very happy.
This story was told to me by Vance, who owns a pest control company and is loves gardening. When he was a child, he was so distraught at having to stay inside a classroom, that his dad made arrangements with the teacher and fellow parents to create an indoor garden themed kindergarten classroom. This tradition has been continued for over 30 years.