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Michigan State University

School Gardening in the early 1900s through today: Older works

Primary source materials and information about gardening within K-12 schools in the early 20th century through today. Now a part of the AgNIC network!

Pre - 1923 works

This bibliography includes primary source material to school gardens from the late 1800s to 1923.  The works are in chronological order.  Additional works will be added as they become available.

The school garden. Being a practical contribution to the subject of education / Erasmus Schwab. Trans. from the 4th German ed. by Mrs. Horace Mann. NY: M. L. Holbrook & Co., 1879. 92 pages.

Parsons, Frances T. [Mrs. William Starr Dana] and Smith, Alice Josephine (Illus.). Plants and their children. Cincinnati, OH: American Book Company, 1896.

A German common school with a garden / C. B. Smith. USDA, Office of Experiment Stations, Circular 42, 1899. 7 pages

Home and School Gardens, Chapter 8 [pages 121-137] / Clifton F. Hodge. In Nature Study and Life. Ginn & Company, 1902. 514 pages.

A few good books and bulletins on nature study, school gardening, and elementary agriculture for common schools / D. J. Crosby. USDA, Office of Experiment Stations, Circular 52, 1903. 4 pages

School gardens in Europe, Chapter XVIII [pages 432-440] / L. R. Klemm and James Laughlin Hughes. Philadelphia, [etc.]. The Bradley-Garretson Co., ltd., 1903.

How to make school gardens: A manual for teachers and pupils / Herbert Daniel Hemenway. NY: Doubleday, Page, 1903. 107 pages

Report on school gardens / D. J. Crosby. Report on the agricultural experiment stations for the year 1903. United States Agricultural Research Service. USDA, Office of Experiment Stations, 1904. p.573-584

School gardens for California schools; a manual for teachers  / Benjamin Marshall Davis. Sacramento, W.W. Shannon, Superintendent State Printing, 1905. 79 pages

School gardens; a report upon some cooperative work with the normal schools of Washington, with notes on school-garden methods followed in other American cities / Galloway, B. T. USDA, Office of Experiment Stations, Bulletin 160, 1905. 47 pages

School gardening for little children / Lucy Latter. London, Swan, Sonnenschein & Co., 1906. p. 166.

School Gardens, Chapter IV [pages 56-84] / Olly Jasper Kern. In Among country schools. Ginn & Company, 1906. pages

Agriculture through the laboratory and school garden. A manual and text-book of elementary agriculture for schools / C.R. Jackson and Mrs. L.S. Daugherty. NY: Judd Company, 1908.

Chapter XXXI: The Widening Sphere of Public Education: School Gardens. The administration of public education in the United States / Samuel Train Dutton, David Snedden.  NY: McMillan, 1908. School Gardens secion: pp. 577-581

The nature-study idea: An interpretation of the new school-movement to put the young into relation and sympathy with nature, 3rd ed. / Liberty Hyde Bailey. 1909

The nature-study idea: An interpretation of the new school-movement to put the young into relation and sympathy with nature, 4th ed. / Liberty Hyde Bailey. 1909

The school garden book / Clarence M. Weed and Philip Emerson. NY: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1909. 320 pages

Suggestions for Garden Work in California Schools / Ernest B. Babcock. University of California, College of Agriculture, Agricultural Experiment Station Circular 46, 1909. 52 pages

Among school gardens / M. Louise Greene. NY: Charities publication committee, 1910

Children's gardens for pleasure, health and education / Henry Griscom Parsons. NY: Sturgis & Walton, 1910. 232 pages

Nature study and gardening for rural schools / George Washington Carver. Tuskegee Institute. Experiment Station Bulletin 18, 1910. 23 pages

Children's School and Home Gardening / A. E. Stene. Extension Bull Vol. 1, no. 4. Agricultural Experiment Station, University of Rhode Island. 1911. 104 pages.

Elementary school agriculture: A teacher's manual to accompany Hilgard and Osterhout's "Agriculture for schools of the pacific slope" / E. B. Babcock, Cyril A. Stebbins, and Eugene W. Hilgard. NY: The Macmillan, 1911.

Gardens and their meaning / Dora Williams. Boston: Ginn and Company, 1911. 235 pages

Small gardens for small folks / Edith Loring Fullerton. W.A. Burpee & Co., 1912

Some types of children's garden work / Susan Bender Sipe. USDA, Office of Experiment Stations, Bulletin 252, 1912. 70 pages

The principles of agriculture through the school and the home garden / C. A. Stebbins. NY: The MacMillan, 1913. 380 pages

School Gardening / F. E. Lloyd and L. N. Duncan. Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station, Circular 13, 1911. 27 pages.

The beginner's garden book; A textbook for the upper grammar grades / Allen French. NY: Macmillan, 1914. 412 pages

Gardens, School; Gardens for Children [pages 10–13] / Maurice A. Bigelow. A Cyclopedia of Education, vol. 3, ed. Paul Monroe. New York: Macmillan, 1914.

Miller, Louise Klein. Children's gardens for school and home; a manual of cooperative gardening. New York: Appleton, 1914. xiv, 235 p. Illustrated.

The child's food garden with a few suggestions for flower culture / Van Evrie Kilpatrick. Yonkers-on-Hudson, N.Y: World Book, 1918.

Report On the Home and School Garden Movement of the Recreation Commission by Prepared by the Detroit Bureau of Governmental Research, April, 1918.17 pages. [pdf link]

Suggestions for garden work in the public schools. A War-modified Course of Study for the Public Schools of Colorado, Volume 3. 1918. Colorado: Department of Public Instruction. p. 65-101.

Our schools in war time--and after. Chapter X: Farm Cadets [pages 234-303] / Arthur Davis Dean. New York: Ginn and company, 1918. 376 pp. [pdf link]

School and home gardening a text book for young people, with plans, suggestions and helps for teachers, club leaders and organizers / Kary Cadmus Davis. Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott company, 1918

The war garden guyed ... / National War Garden Commission. The National war garden commission, 1918
[Cartoons reflecting the lighter side of war gardening.]

School Garden Work in the Course of Study / Ernest B. Babcock and Cyril A. Stebbins. University of California, College of Agriculture, Agricultural Experiment Station, Circular 62, 1919. 12 pages

Woman's Land Army of America. Handbook of standards for the Woman's Land Army of America. Washington, D.C.: National Board of the W.L.A.A., [1919]. 

Norris, J. and preface by Henry Parsons. The school gardener. London: Cassell, 1920.

Cornell Rural School Leaflets
Volumes 1-3, Volumes 1-5, Volumes 6-7, Volumes 8 and 11-12, Volumes 9-11, Volumes 13-16, Volumes 15-16, ...

Princples & practice of school gardening & connected handwork /  Herbert W. Gunston and Charles W. Hawks. London, Pitman, 1922.
Series: Pitman's handwork series

1924-1969 Works

Documents are in chronological order.

Van Evrie Kilpatrick. The School Garden: A Laboratory of Nature. New York: School Garden Association, 1940.

Studebaker, John W. American School Systems and War Gardens. [p. 43-46 of the pdf] National defense gardening conference. U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Washington, D.C., 1941. 100 pages. 

Nature's garden for victory and peace, Revised and reprinted / George Washington Carver. Tuskegee Institute. Experiment Station Bulletin 43, 1942. 26 pages

"Elementary garden graphs for boys and girls"
Lessons 2 - 5 written for elementary grade students as a partial guide to gardening complete with text and excellent instructive diagrams. May, 1942. 15 pages. Pdf link.

Elementary garden graphs for boys and girls by Paul R. Young, J. Dean Halliday (illus.); Foreward by Willis A. Sutton. Garden Reviews, Inc., NY. May, 1944. 34 pages. PDF link on page.
Lesson book, "Elementary garden graphs for boys and girls" has eight lessons written for elementary grade students as a comprehensive guide to gardening complete with text and excellent instructive diagrams.

Teacher's manual for use with advanced garden graphs, by Paul R. Young. Garden Reviews, Inc., NY, 1944. 20 pages. PDF link on page.
Suggestions for teaching materials and procedures to make effective the lessons covered in this general science text in practical gardening; by Paul R. Young, Supervisor of School Gardening.

Teacher's manual of home and school gardening; by Paul R. Young. Cleveland Public Schools Horticulture Program, Cleveland, Ohio. Children's Flower Mission, Cleveland, Ohio, [n.d.] 24 pages. PDF link on page.
From the editor's forward, "By placing this booklet in the hands of teachers and school people throughout the land, the Children's Flower Mission is performing a distinct service to the cause of school gardening, which is the writer's chief interest. How to make effort and interest best count toward results is always the question confronting the inexperienced teacher. 'Seeds make a garden,' but the mere selling of them to the would-be gardener does not. Realization of these facts is behind the action of Mr. Templin and Mr. Bradley in thus attempting to aid in the successful use of their products. Paul R. Young" Cleveland Public Schools Horticulture Program, Cleveland, Ohio.

Advanced garden graphs: Practical instructions in gardeningby Paul Young and Charles W. Riley (Illustrator), Garden Reviews, Inc., NY, 1944. 51 pages.  Pdf Link.

Report: National victory garden conference: U.S. Department of Agriculture auditorium, Washington, D.C., November 28-29, 1944. War Food Administration, Extension Service, 1944. 52 pages.

Rural school leaflet, Issues 1-46 / United States. Bureau of Education, United States. Office of Education. February 1922 - December 1924 - 1930. [Note: In Google, Leaflets progress normally from 1-34, but all pages of leaflets 35-46 are listed backwards, up to the last page of leaflet 34.]

Mack, Warren B., Helen Marshall Eliason and Pauline Beery Mack. Chapter: School gardens (pg. 64-66). Victory gardens; Handbook of the Victory Garden Committee, War services, Pennsylvania State Council of Defense. [n.p.] 1944.

Elementary lessons in gardening from the School Gardengram, by Paul R. Young. Cleveland Public Schools Horticulture Program. The National Garden Institute, Columbus, Ohio, 1953. 118 pages. Pdf link.
From the Introduction, "This book has been compiled by popular demand from School Gardengrams issued monthly for the past three years by the National Garden Institute and represents a thorough and complete elementary course in gardening."[p. 6]

McInerney, George K. A history of the School Garden Association of New York with emphasis upon its contributions to school activities which originate from school garden work. Thesis (Ed. D.)--Teachers College, Columbia University, 1958. [Abstract only]

Plants in the Classroom, An Environmental Investigation. ERIC Doc. ED103246. Minnesota Environmental Sciences Foundation, Inc., Minneapolis, 1971. 25 pages.

Scheid, David Theodore. An Approach to Teaching Children the Aesthetics of Plants and Gardens. A thesis submitted to the Faculty of the University of Delaware in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Ornamental Horticulture. June, 1976. Bibliography pgs. 32-37.


 Revisiting Garden Based Learning in Basic Education: Philosophical, Roots, historical foundations, best practices and products, impacts, outcomes and future directions / Desmond, Dan, et al. Report for International Institute for Educational Planning and Food and Agricultural Organization/UN, Paris, France, 2002. 99 pages
[Contains both an extensive literature cited and a bibliograph of resources for teaching gardening in the classroom by grade levels.]

Garden-based learning in basic education: A historical review / Aarti Subramaniam. 4-H Center for Youth Development Monograph, 2002. 12 pages

Garden-based learning in basic education: Considering assessment from a learner-centered approach / Aarti Subramaniam. 4-H Center for Youth Development, Fall 2003. 32 pages.

The Planner in the Garden: A Historical View into the Relationship between Planning and Community Gardens / Laura Lawson. Journal of Planning History, 3(2004): 151-176.

Garden-based education in school settings: The effects on children's vegetable consumption, vegetable preferences and ecoliteracy / Michelle Markesteyn Ratcliffe, Ph.D., Tufts University, 2007, 203 pages. [WorldCat record]

An approach to teaching children about the aesthetics of plants and gardens / David Theodore Scheid. Thesis (M.S.) - University of Delaware, 1976. 37 pages.