The sunflowers that were sown, have rapidly taken on a life of their own. Growing gangly, and hardened off, they have been planted out today. I have taken a risk, what with a potential for there to be a frost tonight. This may result in them ceasing to exist, a few of them were sulking as they were planted. I do still have a few that I have kept back, these weren’t as big yet in being recent sowings.
They have been strategically planted across the plot, mainly where they might be to signal in bumble bees required for pollination. We have a combination of giant sunflowers and sunburst. So even if the bumbles can fly seven feet in the air, they will fly straight into a sunflower.
As you are aware, I have sown sunflowers to see if these impact on the mental health of teachers. At this stage, my sunflowers aren’t doing too badly. I did worry when we had the horrible frost the night before last. They are still there, I had to check today!
Getting taller, they are chomping at the bit. I don’t think it will be long before I have to transplant them onto the plot. I did sow some additional ones about a week ago, and as they are quick growers, three babies were already potted up. I am hoping that the one sat by the window, does revive. It was in danger of snapping and keeling over. Perhaps when it is a bit more sure footed, it will return to it’s class mates.
So here we have it, the Psychology Sunflower challenge. As the winter starts to ebb away,the days get longer, the sunshine starts to appear. We step out of the dreariness of the dark, dank, winter moths and say hello to brightness.
I am challenging my fellow teachers, regardless of subject area, to grow sunflowers. Something of a natural experiment, if you like. The details above, are taken from the latest article of The ATP Magazine. Later this year, I am hoping to carry out a workshop at The ATP conference that looks at gardening and well being.
The instructions for the challenge are are simple. Place a sunflower seed into a pot of moist compost. You can even make your own paper pots if you wish! rather informative video here of how you can make those. Keep them moist and warm, but not damp enough to rot away. These should germinate quite quickly, and get quite tall. Once the threat of frost in your area has passed, you can transplant them outside.
Once outside, provided that they are well feed-they do get hungry-your sunflower will do it’s best to reach for the sky. You might even want to give it a name, and see just how tall it will grow. They are happy in both pots and in the open ground.
Here’s hoping that lots of folks get involved, and it would be lovely to see how the sunflowers are going.
I am a green fingered teacher of Psychology. There are quite a few of us. Psychology teachers, that is, not sure about the green fingered variety. Though there are quite a few green fingered teachers out there.
Psychology has over the years become increasingly more popular, particularly at a pre-tertiary level. Not many places teach Psychology at GCSE/Level 2, so students only encounter it at AS/A Level/Level 3. This can often make things challenging for teachers of Psychology. Especially in terms of resources, CPD and just knowing what direction to go in. I have personally found the ATP really useful. The association of Teachers of Psychology is a voluntary organisation that supports the work of Psychology teachers. I have found them fabulously supportive over the last five years. They offer cracking low cost value for money CPD that really enriches teaching and learning. Having been to two of their last conferences, I cannot recommend them enough. The conferences that I have been to, have been informative, well resourced, and an invaluable opportune to meet fellow Psychology teachers. You can have a look at past conferences at this site. I am hoping to go next year, and perhaps share the green fingered love of all things horticultural. Once upon a time, I used to grow seedlings in a classroom. Plus the swelling idea that horticulture and mental health go hand in hand is something I find very interesting and would love to share with colleagues. As well see how many psychology teachers can grow sunflowers and how big. That might also feature in the Spring.
With budget constraints, the future of pre-tertiary Psychology all over the shop the ATP are working hard so that myself and colleagues have support. Compared to other associations, the membership price is really good value. £25, I think. Student membership is even less. So if you are a teacher of Psychology, and I don’t think it matters from which part of the globe you are in, I would certainly have a look at The ATP. The issues in Psychology are global, after all.
The brain that you see above, was commissioned from a lovely lady named Ali Campbell and you can find all the details for it here I use it in class for plenaries and questioning. It’s termed the brain of doom, but students actually ask to catch it. So I highly recommend it. For all details about Ali Campbell’s creations have a look at gethookedoncrochet website.