Kitchen Garden Program goes to the show!

Monday, July 17, 2023

We love seeing stories and pictures from Kitchen Garden schools participating in their local agricultural shows – it really takes the ‘grow, harvest, prepare and share’ philosophy up a notch!

Agricultural shows give schools a chance to bring their beautiful, fresh produce from the kitchen garden to their local show and share the fruits of their labour with the wider community. Agricultural Shows of Australia’s vision is “…a strong and vibrant network of Agricultural Shows working together to engage, influence and promote the essential value of Australian agriculture.” The group represents over 580 shows in the country, and we are delighted that Kitchen Garden members are a lively part of this ‘essential value’.

Students from Osborne Primary School with their first prize! 

Some of the schools taking part in recent local shows include Gorokan Public School in New South Wales, who took home a third-place prize, Blair Athol in South Australia, who took home several first-place ribbons, and Camberwell Primary School in Victoria, who won first prize for best set of six eggs!

It’s also great to see schools winning prizes for their school garden harvests. At the Red Hill Show in Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula, Osborne Primary won first place for ‘best harvest basket from a school garden’, while Namadgi School in the ACT won Most Successful Junior Exhibitor, taking home a massive twelve prizes across their fruit and veggies at the Canberra Agricultural Show.

Kitchen Garden Teacher, Kelly King, from Gorokan Public School with their third prize! 

Agricultural shows also allow kids to show off their creative talents. At the Perth Royal Show, Wirrarbirra Education Support Centre took home first prize in the Sustainable Scarecrow competition. The contest focused on celebrating and highlighting fresh produce from each of the four seasons and Wirrabirra went above and beyond, using living plants from the garden and repurposing other materials to create one of the most amazing scarecrows we’ve ever seen! This activity in particular could be repurposed at home or in Kitchen Garden sessions to learn about sustainability or just to enliven a garden in a very fun way.

Wirrabarra's incredible sustainable scarecrow! 

Educators Julie, Kathryn and Lydia from Namagdi noted that the school’s participation in the Canberra Agricultural Show meant that families were encouraged to start growing their own produce at home, feeling inspired from what they saw on the day. The school has also recently purchased some more varieties of veggies to start growing so they can be even more competitive next year. This also has the added bonus of students being exposed to more veggies in the year, as they get used in the cooking classes as well.

Similarly, Lynda Tucker from Woodlinks State School let us know that the school’s community support was so strong at the Ipswich Show, that families excitedly revealed the school’s results to her (first prizes for their sweet potatoes and for loofahs grown in the garden) before she even had a chance to check!

Representing their school at an agricultural show is a great experience for students. It’s something for them to work towards, not just for the competition aspect but also as an outlet to see what they’ve learned through their kitchen garden sessions. Both hard skills such as harvesting and produce knowledge, as well as soft skills, such as teamwork, are put to the test, so even if theres no prize at the end of the day, theres still a massive win from taking part! So too, the potential for students learning about vocational pathways, and the amazing sense of community shows promote.


For anyone interested in discovering agriculture shows near them, visit Agricultural Show Australia’s website.

Kitchen Garden members considering entering a show might like to look at the preserving resource on the Shared Table.


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