Vermont School Garden

A visit to a Vermont public school garden through the seasons.

Popcorn Harvest , Grade 4, 2013

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Great harvest this year!

Great harvest this year!

Fourth graders looked at the two rows of popcorn they planted last spring and they estimated how many ears would be harvested. Then they got to work, (with a few breaks to run through the rows). In teams they harvested three ears of corn, peeled back the husks and tied the ‘triplets’ together. If you’ve never done this, it may sound simple but it isn’t. If you aren’t careful the husks slip right off the ears. In our plan for drying, the corn is hung similar to decorative corn, in threes in a cool dry place. This year our custodian, Adam Hallock, rigged some drying lines right in the dining hall at school. That way, as the popcorn dries, the children can look at it and remember where their weekly popcorn snack came from. Many thanks, Adam! I will get a photo of our drying popcorn to add to this entry.

You may be wondering about the loose ears of popcorn. Nancy Bladyka, fourth grade teacher will let the students experiment with other environments for drying the popcorn ears. Some will go in their classroom. Some will go into a freezer. Students will predict the best environment for drying. Then in January, we’ll hold a popcorn “pop-off.” May the best environment win!


gathering triplets into bins

gathering triplets into bins

triplet 2

wheeling husks to the compost

wheeling husks to the compost


Author: vermontschoolgarden

I have been an elementary teacher at the Westminster Center School for 30 years. For most of those years, I maintained a garden as part of my teaching curriculum resource. Now I am the Garden Coordinator for all of the Westminster Center School classrooms.

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