Youth Gardening Education the Focus of Extension Workshop

Contact: Melissa Stewart
(304) 532-1670

Nov. 2, 2012

Youth Gardening Education the Focus of Extension Workshop

HUNTINGTON, W.Va.– Educating young people about gardening and sustainability is the focus of West Virginia State University Extension Service’s Junior Master Gardener (JMG) training session Wednesday, Nov. 14, from 9 a.m. until noon at the Barnett Center in Huntington. Elementary school teachers, after-school workers, home-school parents, community volunteers, youth groups or others who work with K-5 children are encouraged to attend the free session.

“JMG nurtures an interest in gardening and agriculture in kids at a young age,” said Melissa Stewart, WVSU extension specialist for Agriculture & Natural Resources. “It provides experience with not only the fundamentals of gardening, but introduces science, nature and even literature using fun, educational activities.”

JMG is a curriculum developed by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, targeting grades K-8. Components focus on health, nutrition, wildlife education, plant growth and development, and natural resources. Participants learn by engaging in hands-on projects and activities.

Stewart has worked with JMG for years and currently serves as the program’s state coordinator for West Virginia. She has seen success in classroom, after-school and community garden settings, as well as adaptive gardens with older residents.

“We’ve been working to adapt the program down to the preschool level, and I’ve even had success when working with elderly residents in our community gardens,” said Stewart. “This program is very versatile. Anyone who isn’t familiar with gardening concepts can learn from it.”

There is no cost to attend the training session, but registration is required by contacting Stewart at (304) 532-1670 or To learn more about the Junior Master Gardener program, visit

The Barnett Center is located at 1524 10th Ave. in Huntington.

West Virginia State University is a public, land grant, historically black university, which has evolved into a fully accessible, racially integrated, and multiā€generational institution, located in Institute, WV. As a “living laboratory of human relations,” the university is a community of students, staff, and faculty committed to academic growth, service and preservation of the racial and cultural diversity of the institution. Its mission is to meet the higher education and economic development needs of the state and region through innovative teaching and applied research.



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