Permaculture Gardens

SCP leader:                          Ms Marion Cutajar

Participating school:      St Joan Antide Primary School Gudja

Students’ Age:                    4-10 years

Project time frame:          Project Year 1

  • Research question: What was the research question? What are the underlying regional problems?
  1. How can we use small and big spaces to grow fruit and vegetables in our school?
  2. How can we use the yards and balconies in our homes, the front gardens in the schools’ neighbourhood and the public gardens of our village to grow herbs, vegetables and fruit for the whole community?
  • Approach: How did you proceed?

The school, in collaboration with the Eco-Schools Committee contacted (i) other European schools willing to join us; (ii) the Gudja Local Council; (iii) the Lands Department; and (iv) a Permaculture specialist from Dar Frate Jakoba in Marsascala – an active permaculture site. Together we drafted an application to apply for EU funds.

The main objectives of the partnership were:

  • to develop care for the Earth, the environment and people;
  • to develop the key competences, such as ITC skills and linguistic competences
  • to improve students’ and teachers’ communication, group working skills, and the use of English language;
  • to encourage students to cooperate with European partners from an early age and  promote a European dimension amongst all participants, develop internationalization and open-mindedness; and
  • to share teaching and learning methods, values of education, school organization and curriculum and discover innovative pedagogies.
  • Solution: What are your findings?

We found that whilst some families are really into growing vegetables and fruit, most of the families never even thought about it. Through the project we provided both physical and online (during COVID-19) training so staff members, pupils, parents and community members could join in and learn more about permaculture.

Our European partners from Iceland, Croatia and Macedonia also sent 12 Heads of Schools and teachers to Malta for the launch of the project and the initial training. This had a huge ripple effect as participants went beck to their respective countries and trained their own staff and children.

  • Recommendation: What solutions have you developed for the regional problem(s)?

Through this project participants learned (i) how to grow herbs, fruit and vegetables on roofs, balconies and yards; (ii) that roundabouts can be used more productively; and (iii) that front gardens of houses can be easily used to  grow beans, tomatoes, peppers and herbs, besides the usual decorative trees. However, the greatest achievement was that we engaged and empowered our young girls to become change agents.

  • Dissemination: How did you promote your recommendations?

The project is still ongoing and there are regular posts on e-Twinning, the school Facebook page, the College website, the College year book and the Local Council page and flyers.

  • Photos