June 25th, big day, three events: second event, the Children’s Workshop

Unlike the Earthen Workshop, the Children’s Workshop was planned in advance as one of the six workshops for this year’s GANG growing season. A wonderful young Indiana University student, Stephanie Partridge, had dreamed it up, with this title and description:

Children’s Workshop: Inviting the Little People into the Garden

Saturday, June 25, 2-4 p.m.

“Led by Stephanie Partridge and Emily Ginzberg. Tribes all over the world have stories of little people (elves, leprechauns, fairies, spirits, sprites, gnomes, borrowers) and many times they are associated with gardens. Some believe they are peaceful keepers of the plants and help them grow and flourish. Others believe they are tricksters and you must pay homage to them or else they will play with your plants. I believe the little garden spirits, in whatever manifestation, are good in nature and are here to help and have fun. Who better to help invite them to play than children? (We will talk about the fairies, and hand out supplies to paint rocks, bowls, shards. After done we will encourage them to make altars with twigs, leaves, etc.”

Here’s the flyer: Children’s Workshop.

Unfortunately, fellow student and co-teacher Emily Ginzburg, had double-scheduled herself, and ended up out of town. However, Stephanie was fine on her own, and having heard part of her story afterwards, I can see why. She told me she grew up in the woods of Indiana with no children around, just she and her Mom. And that the animals and plants, and fairies were her companions.

Like the Earthen Workshop, this one didn’t go quite as expected either. Rather than making altars, the five children who participated spent all their time painting the pottery shards that Stephanie provided —

Cora, daughter of Melissa and Chris Clark. Melissa is the SPEA professor whose undergraduate class in sustainability partners with the GANG garden to design and build projects.

with great focus and concentration —





















and blowing bubbles.

This is Maya Baird, daughter of Rhonda and Corbin Baird. Rhonda is one of our permaculture teachers in the GANG garden.

Stephanie encouraged this shy one, sat him on her lap to get started . . .









There were also quite a few parents and other adults hovering nearby, and some little ones, including year-old Max, here with my dog, Emma, about to lick his toes.

Max, an unusally friendly child, even climbed on my lap (I’m not usually perceived as cuddly.)











Charlotte, from the other end of the hood, joined us for a little while, hung out with Cora’s dad Chris.

A few of the kids had to leave before all the chards were painted. So it was up to Cora and Maya to place them around the garden. The fish art, said Maya, belongs on the edge of the pond . . .

A few others here and there . . .

Cora's shard is on the little table; Maya's at bottom right, leaning into the pear tree. Anothe

























Thanks to Stephanie and the children, the GANG garden has begun to sparkle with fairy dust! Thanks to all!