When my class took an interest in plants and flowers, I set up this Garden Shop for them.
To make room in the classroom for this center, I cleared off an entire shelf and moved what was there to our storage closet. We have a Pre-K standard that says children should be able to identify coins, so I added real money to this center for the children to pretend to buy the items from the Garden Shop.
I added paper, markers, and a keyboard (cash register), and children practiced literacy and math skills by writing prices and words on receipts. I didn’t tell them to do that, but just by adding those materials to that area, children came up with the idea on their own.
I used this dollar spot basket to place some artificial flowers (dollar store), and tape a label with a price.
I used another of these dollar spot baskets to hold some packs of garden seeds. You can buy these packs for a $1.00 or less at discount stores. You can remove the seeds, but for realism, I chose to leave the seeds in the packets and put tape over the seal. That way, the kids could feel the real weight of each type of seed packet and could hear a sound when they shook them.
I added garden trowels and gloves. These are children’s trowels that I bought on clearance at the end of summer. The garden gloves were bought at the dollar store.
These baskets contain wooden bird houses (dollar store) and garden rocks or river rocks (discount store).
These boxes have children’s garden aprons and knee pads (bought on clearance at the end of summer).
These metal watering cans were bought on clearance at the end of summer. I also use these for the kids to water our class plant during the year and sometimes they water the plants in the school garden. I like them because they’re sturdy metal and won’t break if the kids step on them.
This is a children’s sized keyboard for the computer that I used for a pretend cash register. The basket has white paper strips and markers for writing receipts.
Some of the receipts the kids wrote. They copied the words and numbers from the labels that were stuck to the baskets and tubs.
This little girl made use of everything she found in the Garden Shop. She built her garden with blocks. She used the garden rocks to “plant” her flowers (she made the flowers stand up better by putting the rocks in the flower pots). She’s watering with the watering cans, and wearing the apron, knee pads, and gloves.