5 Ways Teachers are Gardeners

Teachers are gardeners. I came up with this profound thought while I was……. Yep! Gardening.  I was digging around in the dirt. Planting a new flowerbed.  Picking out what went where. Tugging at stubborn rocks (I have never seen so many rocks!) and it hit me, teachers are gardeners.

1. We pick out what goes where. Even with a set curriculum and state standards that we have to follow, we still pick out how to best reach our students. After all, who is more of an expert on our kids than we are? We decide which method to use, which lesson to use, which passage to read, which activity to do, which assignment to make.

2. We dig around. We hint, we ponder, we question, and all the time we are digging around to discover what makes our students tick, what they like, what they don’t like, and how we can best connect with them.

3. We plant. We teach and re-teach (and re-teach) and assess all of the information that is our responsibility to pass on to our students. We take those seeds of knowledge and press them firmly in, hoping our students reach new depths of knowledge before they move out of our rooms and our lives.

4. We tug at stubborn rocks. We all have had the student (or still do) that tugs at your heart, but you can’t seem to get through to them. You have tried and tried to convince them that you aren’t the enemy. You are on the same team. You are on their side, but they still remain as stubbornly in place as that boulder in the flowerbed.

5. We watch and hope for that light bulb going off. For that “I’ve got it!” look. For that “I understand” smile. For the student that has tried and failed and tried again to reach the finish line. For the closed off student to open the door and let you in. For the moment when everything falls into place.

And, that is how teachers are gardeners.

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And speaking of flowers......
Get ready for May with this informational text resource!


  1. Some of my many favourite picture books..."The Gardener" by Sarah Stewart and "Mrs. Spitzer's Garden" by Edith Pattou!

  2. I love the analogy between teachng and gardening. I also garden, and I get it all the way through. I'll be thinking of it as I plant the vegies and flowers. I just joined Teacher Bloggers saw your request for critique of your blog. I'll write my comments there. Could you do me a favor? Would you do the same for me. You can write me via contact info on my blog: http://www.marieslittleredschoolhouse.blogspot.com thank you.


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