Reflections on the “Intergenerational Landed Learning Program” (5 Years Later) by Josh Nguyen a former LL student

This piece was written by Josh Nguyen a former LL student who is now a secondary student in the TREK program. He has been volunteering in our garden for the last few months and is about to begin filming a documentary about Landed Learning.

Intergenerational Landed Learning Program (5 Years Later)

For the past 5 years, the Intergeneration Landed Learning program has always had a special place in my heart. When I returned to the UBC Farms five years after the Landed Learning program, I felt nostalgic. That warm feeling and flashback of memories from 2010 are some things I will never forget about the Landed Learning Program.

Over all the years that have past since the LLP, certain memories have always stuck with me. Making bread in the oven outside in the pouring rain, crying about the chicken that broke its leg and had to get put down, making kale salad, planning the gardens at the potluck hosted at my school, Edith Cavell.

Mr. Bell coming to Edith Cavell was the greatest thing that happened to all the kids. We had the opportunity to go on fieldtrips and learn about the environment on a bi-weekly basis. Not only that, but my best friend and I at the time had wanted to be in Mr. Bell’s class the first day he came to school. We met him thirty minutes before school started on the first day, and he struck a conversation with us with a warm smile that made us feel special.

My fellow classmates and I loved spending time in the outdoors. Which is what inspired me to love the outdoors – my inspiration to join TREK. Although some days it was pouring rain, we found a way to always make the sun shine in our minds. I remember one of my farm buddy’s name, Ann.

One big event I remember is the potluck that was hosted in the winter, to plan our new gardens. I remember all the other kids in the school would wait outside the multipurpose room, looking through the small window on the door with a look of complete jealousy. Our class loved the feeling of doing something unique, and special from all the other regular school classes. Although, not everybody enjoys things in the present.

When I was a kid, I loved the farm. But now, I have more appreciation from the farm because it made me who I am today. I learned from this experience that looking back, the ILLP was truly a lifetime experience that I will never forget. That is why I support this program so much and it is also why I want to spread the awareness. Outdoor education programs for children like the ILLP are fundamental. They get children away from technology distractions, and they teach kids life lessons that can’t be taught in a classroom. And they also create these warm memories that kids will remember for a lifetime, instead of remembering the same repetitive schedule every year.

I will continue to stand with the ILLP. And I hope that I can make change by spreading the awareness of fundamental programs like these.

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