The Bexar County Youth Gardens Program is one of the many programs of the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and is designed to provide educators, volunteers, and community leaders with an innovative method for using gardens as outdoor classrooms. The garden supplements efforts to improve T.A.K.S. (Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills) scores by using the garden as an alternative to the typical classroom setting. It also assists in meeting the mandatory T.E.K.S. (Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills) objectives through utilization of the award-winning Junior Master Gardener curricula. This program strives to create an environment that brings together parents, educators, and the community to educate urban youth about agricultural commodities and an array of other subjects while, at the same time, promoting community involvement. Research has shown gardening is an effective way to help children gain a respect for nature and the environment, learn about nutrition and improved food choices, develop interpersonal skills, and enhance classroom learning with practical hands-on experience — all of which help them to become well-rounded, socially aware and productive members of their communities.
The Bexar County Youth Gardens Program is made possible through a generous grant from the San Antonio Livestock Exposition Inc.