Universal Journal of Educational Research Vol. 4(8), pp. 1848 - 1857
DOI: 10.13189/ujer.2016.040814
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Biology Education & Health Education: A School Garden as a Location of Learning & Well-being


Carolin Retzlaff-Fürst *
Department of Didactics Biology, University of Rostock, Germany

ABSTRACT

Children and adolescents spend a large part of their day at school. Physical and mental problems result from physical inactivity, sitting positions at work and "indoor lifestyle" (WHO 2004). Therefore, health education is a major topic in school. Biology classes (scholastic) can make an important contribution in this context. Health as a person's state is composed by physical, mental and social aspects (WHO 1946, Hurrelmann 2010). The presence of nature can have positive effects on all components of the (subjective) well-being of humans at all ages. The fact has already been well proved by science (Ulrich 1984; Health Council of the Netherlands 2004; Barton/Pretty 2010). In the scholastic context environment or gardens hold various functions as (special) places for the contact between humans and nature: They are areas for explorative learning, they provide manifold sources for interdisciplinary teaching, they are spots to generate skills and recovery and they are places for nutritional and environmental education (Blair 2009; Jäckel 2010). Generally, school gardens may take over a significant function in view of health education and wellness of children and adolescents. As a consequence, practical work and other activities in a school garden let the place become a point for physical agitation, relaxation and stress reduction. School garden classes and school garden practice in most of the cases are only held in the lower age groups of pupils (primary school). An analysis shall show that school gardens also could be employed for the health education in higher grades (11th and 12th grade). Representative a course of pre-study students (teacher students and / or prospective teachers) of the second semester were interviewed and tested in the educational garden of the University of Rostock about their subjective well-being. As a result, it was proved that garden activities have highly positive effects on self-esteem.

KEYWORDS
School Garden, Health Education, Environmental Education, Self-esteem

Cite this paper
Carolin Retzlaff-Fürst . "Biology Education & Health Education: A School Garden as a Location of Learning & Well-being." Universal Journal of Educational Research 4.8 (2016) 1848 - 1857. doi: 10.13189/ujer.2016.040814.