February 28, 2023
KUALA LUMPUR – MORE than 960 pupils and teachers at SK Taman Suria have been involved in the “Wakaf Botani” programme as part of the school’s initiative to get pupils interested in gardening.
SK Taman Suria Environmental Club coordinator Hafizul Syarafi Mohd Noor said the programme started in January last year when the pupils were taught how to grow vegetables at home.
“The children are taught the basic gardening steps and the types of vegetables like chillies that they can plant in soil or hydroponically.
“The main agenda is to teach the pupils how they can grow their own food at home and appreciate the labour that goes into the production of each vegetable,” he said when met at the school.
Hafizul said Wakaf Botani had introduced five green initiatives to give better exposure and hands-on learning experiences to pupils on the processes of planting and harvesting.
“We have a garden of decorative plants, a garden for students with special needs, the environmental club garden, a hydroponic garden for each class and a mushroom cultivation corner,” he said.
“We have also created a seed bank for other members of the community and teachers to bring in extra seeds to be used in the teaching process,” he added.
Some of the teachers bring vegetables growing at their homes or in their villages to show to the schoolchildren, said Hafizul.
“We have also conducted a pollination class in the city with the help of the Stingless Bee Farming Association (JBEES),” he said.
He highlighted that the children learned about pollination in their “love our local fruit” class too.
“Visitors to our school will be given a plant to be adopted, and those who have extra plants are welcome to donate them to the school,” he added.
Hafizul said the school was planning to turn the Wakaf Botani into a foundation in the future to teach the local community about urban farming, with the help of the Agriculture Department.
“We hope to share the seeds that have been collected and teach our community to be more independent,” he said.
The school won the Sustainable Development Goals 2022 competition last year.
It was organised by the Johor Education Department, in the Sustainable School Programme 2021-2022 under the Johor Environment Department.