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Mygrove competition winners from Poplar Primary School visit Highgrove

15th July 2014

Children take part in a drawing class with tutors from The Prince's Drawing School

Children take part in a drawing class with tutors from The Prince's Drawing School

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Children from Poplar Primary School were given a very special garden tour at Highgrove as the prize for winning The Prince of Wales's Mygrove competition 2014.

Excitement filled the air as the 40 children stepped off the coach that had travelled to Gloucestershire from London, where the eager young gardeners were ready for a day of fun-packed activities.

Staff from The Prince's official residence were there to welcome the children, as they explained that the children would be taking part in a number of different activities throughout the day.

Divided in to three groups, the children took it in turns to draw in the Orchard using charcoal and paper. Guiding them, were two tutors from The Prince's Drawing School. Founded by The Prince of Wales and artist Catherine Goodman in 2000, The Prince’s Drawing School facilitates and promotes the practice of drawing from observation.

And in the Orchard, the children did just that with Constanza Dessain and Jonathan Farr, who re-created Ovid's "Metamorphoses" of Daphne and Apollo, where Daphne turns in to a tree. Using a cape made of leaves, the tutors encouraged the children to draw the process of metamorphism from a human in to a tree.

Meanwhile, Jenny Chandler, a chef who works with Borough Market and its School Food Matters programme, came along for the day with some seasonal produce from the market, to teach the children about all the delicious things they can make with the fruit, vegetables and herbs they are growing in their school garden.

Summer Seeded Toasties and a fresh Garden Salad with homemade dressing were the menu du jour, as the children got messy in the marquee, tasting and sampling edible flowers from the Highgrove garden and herbs they had never tasted before.

Speaking after the visit, Jenny said: "The children came here today to learn about cooking with the kind of produce that they're likely to have grown in their garden. We used lots of produce from Borough Market today, using very simple, very seasonal produce. 

"It's been really fantastic to work with such enthusiastic youngsters today and to really celebrate the idea that children are starting to understand where their food comes from. I think it's really important for competitions like this to exist because it really does make schools and children focus on growing their own vegetables."

 

Children take part in a seasonal cooking lesson with Jenny Chandler from Borough Market

Children take part in a seasonal cooking lesson with Jenny Chandler from Borough Market

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At the same time, the third group of children were being led on an exciting garden tour with the Highgrove gardeners, who showed them the highlights of The Prince's garden and gave them lots of inspiration for their own allotment at Poplar Primary School.

Handed a clip board and an activity sheet, the children were tasked with finding things around the garden beginning with each letter in the word "Mygrove" - and they found many! 

One keen Mygrove gardener said: "It feels very special to have won and it makes you feel very important that you've actually visited a Royal place."

After lunch, the children potted seeds with the Highgrove gardeners, this year it was Nasturtiums, which are easy to grow and produce red, orange and yellow brightly coloured flowers.

Ending the day, they were presented with a certificate signed by His Royal Highness, before being presented with goody bags.

Jo Pfeifer, a teacher at Poplar Primary School and head of the gardening club said: "We've had a really lovely time and we'd like to stay!

"It's been absolutely fabulous and we are just so delighted to be here today. It's really inspirational. 

She added: "I think we've taken some ideas to progress back at school, we've really loved it, the children are so excited and I think you can see that in their behaviour today.

"They've had such a lovely time, with such a wide variety of activities and lots of nice things to take home with them."

 

 

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