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Monday, September 23, 2013

Growth In Spite of the Late Start


I think this post was somewhat inspired by Elsie's post on her tomatoes but with a classroom connection...

Back in May, I was crazy busy with the end of the school year!  I felt like I could barely keep my head above water...so when Kevin mentioned the idea of planting tomatoes once again this year I was less than excited to take on the task.  I put it off until the second week of June-after school was officially out for the year and I had begun the recuperation process.  Digging up the dirt and spading our little plot of garden was somewhat therapeutic and I rather enjoyed the process once I got into it.  I only planted three...but I got a late start.

As the weird weather this summer ebbed and flowed, I started to wonder if the tomatoes were going to bare fruit before the frost would come (possible light frost tonight).  We had torrential downpours in July!  One of our friends had to abandon her car before the flood waters carried it away!  Many roads were blocked...it was so scary.  Then we had a dry spell with no rain for a while and very hot when we returned to school with a few September days in the 90's.  Despite the strange weather events, our tomato plants began to show signs of growth!  Green tomatoes were visible on the vine.  And then there were set-backs.  Someone-won't say who in the family- picked some green tomatoes off the plant before Mama could tell her not to.  And the family of deer who regularly run through the yards around us decided to feast on the top of the plants and bit off the blooms that were going to be the next round...



All of a sudden last week, the beauty of red, ripe juicy tomatoes had erupted on the vine!  Just when I thought the green would never develop and show the growth needed to make it-they were suddenly ready to be picked!  Turning out just right...


Our bumpy start to the school year reminds me of the late start I got with the tomatoes.  The timing wasn't right.  I overcame the late start and our tomatoes showed growth any way!  I never gave up on them and constantly tended to their needs.  I watered, weeded, waited and propped!  All things that a hopeful yet skilled gardener knows to do in addition to letting nature itself help too!

All though many teachers are getting a late start with their students this year due to unforeseen circumstances with changes in class size, unpredictable set backs with technology, scheduling and MAP testing, I know our students will so grow!  I know this because the teachers are the skilled gardeners who will provide just what their little plants need most.  Just like a gardener, the teachers will water, weed, wait and prop as needed for student success.  Late start or not, the students will succeed!

12 comments:

  1. It's a very positive post, Amy, and your pictures are marvelous! I agree, students are in need of TLC garden care, just like plants. And then they will be ever so JUICY & delightful! Thanks!

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  2. Well, your garden had a lot more challenges than mine and seemed to be more successful! I did a post about my garden and tomatoes 2 weeks ago actually (http://janemartynauthor.wordpress.com/2013/09/10/frog-and-toad-my-not-so-green-thumb-and-a-call-for-help/). The teaching metaphor is great as well. A good reminder to be patient and focus on the long-term goal. Thanks for the great post!

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  3. This is so encouraging for me to persevere. I really appreciate it right now. It seems like we'll never get past that green stage, but now your tomatoes will remind me that harvest does come eventually. Thank you.

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  4. What a great connection between nature and learning. Yes, that harvest will come but some years and for some students it takes a little longer and a lot of patience and extra energy!

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  5. I love the way you circled around and made a connection to our teacher lives.

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  6. Thank you Amy! Through your positiveness you give us all hope for this year.

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  7. Your tomatoes look scrumptious, Amy! Gardening does provide great metaphors for education, doesn't it!

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  8. I love how you compared teachers to skilled gardeners. Yes, we do weed, water, wait and prop hoping that our "tomatoes" will flourish and grow without any little worms along the way.

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  9. I've given up a garden for this season of our lives. Just as everything is ready life becomes school crazy. But the year I retire....in 10 years, I'm planting again.

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  10. How fun that you had a tomato story too! I love the way you took your thinking about tomatoes and turned it into thinking about students! Great thoughts for the fall!

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  11. What a great story about your tomatoes, Amy! They look delicious.
    Speaking of tomatoes, I had a very interesting breakfast while we were in Annapolis this weekend. It was called a Veggie Tower, which was thickly sliced tomatoes, thick mozzarella slices, basil, poached eggs and Hollandaise sauce. It was out of this world! (Here's a link to the restaurant in case you're interested, http://www.missshirleyscafe.com/menu/full-menu.) Maybe you can make that at home with your tomatoes.

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