It’s Spring! Everywhere leaves are making an appearance, as are a multitude of beautiful flowers! It seems appropriate, therefore, for the middle school students at The Renaissance International School (TRIS) to turn their attention to the creation of a garden. This project will serve both them and the community in so many different ways!



Work on a garden helps to bring these young people into intimate contact with nature. It connects them to human history and to modern global issues. It further offers these young people the possibility of contributing something concrete to their school community. Who knows? Maybe someday students at TRIS will get to eat something grown in this garden! Or perhaps families will have the opportunity to purchase something grown there, and the middle school students will discover economic exchange. Oh, the possibilities are endless!

BUT….before they start digging, the students have to understand what they are doing! Anyone can till a garden and toss some seeds on the ground, but if one really wants to be successful, one should really come to understand the different elements that can make or break a garden. It is for this reason that our students have spent time focusing on one of the essential elements in a garden: soil! Who know there was so much science in soil? Our students started their explorations in the classroom, but then quickly headed out.

They were fortunate to be able to go to the Dig it! Exhibit at the California Museum in Sacramento.

DigIt CaliforniaMuseum Sacramento

With the basics under their belts, they then took samples from around campus and Dimond Park. These samples were then used in different experiments to learn more about the soils that we have under our own feet!

Read more about our middle school students:

Middle School students explore the evolution of plants

Middle School students learn about biodiversity at UC Berkeley

Enrollment is still open for Fall 2015 in our Montessori middle school program in Oakland,. Stu­dents from Oak­land, Berke­ley, San Lean­dro, Alameda, and other San Fran­cisco East Bay cities attend The Renais­sance Inter­na­tional School, located in Oakland’s Dimond Dis­trict.