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Grow Getters: Garden-Based Education for Preschool-3rd Grades

The Grow Getters wordmark. Brown, soil-stained text accompanied by a monarch butterfly, a green seedling, a blue-handled garden trowel, and a brown earthworm.

Activities written by Master Gardener volunteers under the direction and review of Anna Barr and Kristine Lang.

Program Overview

The “Grow Getters” series consists of lessons to engage youth in hands-on activities related to gardening in South Dakota – even without a garden! Through these lessons, youth will learn about key topics of the gardening process while participating in standards-based science, nutrition, and physical activities. Get Growing!


Each lesson includes a book suggestion, vocabulary, and three activities in two versions, 1) PreK-Kindergarten and 2) 1st-3rd grades. All lessons are matched to South Dakota educational standards or early learning guidelines. Lessons are written with classrooms and care centers in mind but can be used in many settings. Check back throughout the summer as more lessons are added!

Child with potted plants

Getting the Garden Growing

Introductory gardening lesson where youth will learn what plants need to grow and what fruits and vegetables grow in different seasons in South Dakota.

Teacher pouring a small amount of seed into a student's hand to construct a tiny greenhouse.

Super Seeds

Lesson for youth to explore the many types of seeds that are eaten or grown and learn how they grow.

A group of children observing a bed of garden soil with a teacher.

Stupendous Soils

Lesson for youth to discover the characteristics of different soil types and how to make compost.

Green plant with wide, oval leaves. Pink florets are arranged in a circle at the top of the stem. An orange Monarch butterfly feeds on nectar from one of the florets.

Investigate Pollinators

Lesson about the importance of pollinators and the plants they interact with.

A variety of fresh fruits and vegetables displayed on a countertop.

Eat What You Grow

Youth will learn the different parts of plants that we eat, and how to use drying and freezing techniques to preserve foods for later use.

Previous Lessons

The Grow Getters Program originated as a Master Gardener project in 2020 and is now a multi-departmental effort among SDSU Extension staff and volunteers. These lessons contain activities to engage youth (K-2) in educational activities at home. Check out the first version of Grow Getters materials!

Virtual Field Trips

Mother and daughter examining plant at McCrory Gardens.

McCrory Gardens

Explore some of our favorite destinations and plant displays at McCrory Gardens in Brookings, SD!

Group of local foods education center staff inside high tunnel.

Local Foods Education Center

Learn all about the fruits and vegetables growing at the SDSU Local Foods Education Center in Brookings, SD!