10 Tools to Help Turn Your School Garden Into a ‘Real Outdoor Classroom'

Whether you’re just breaking new ground on a school garden or are a seasoned pro looking to spend more class time outside, here are 10 tools that will help turn your garden into a fully equipped outdoor classroom.

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A box of pre-sharpened pencils and sharpeners, so if one breaks, students don't have to go back inside.
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Great for both science and language arts lessons around informational text — plus, if your kids are afraid of bugs, the cards can distract them with fascinating information, which helps keep them from freaking out when something flies by.
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Gives students a surface to write on. Oh, and they serve as a tangible reminder that they're outside to learn.
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Tape (like duct or packing) that can be torn without a blade. Students can use this to secure samples they collect in their notebooks or on worksheets.
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Measuring tape is essential for outdoor data collection and various math lessons.
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Simple magnifying glasses, or hand lenses, help students inspect tiny details. These can also help students figuratively "focus" on their work.
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Let students examine bugs up close, without freaking out or hurting the creatures.
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These usually live in vegetable or perennial beds and are key for longer-term data collection activities.
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For collecting temperature data in soil and compost.
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Something large for the teacher to write on.
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