The Cedar Ridge garden was established in May, 2012. It is a donation from the American Heart Association in cooperation with Advocate BroMenn medical center. It was the first AHA - sponsored garden in McLean County. The purpose of the garden is to create a real-life learning laboratory in our school. Students will learn how to plant seeds, nurture growing plants, harvest produce and ultimately understand the value of good eating habits. Our Teaching Garden will also teach and reinforce responsibility, leadership, group cohesion, team building, eco-literacy, basic life-science, problem-solving skills, math skills, pride, confidence and self-esteem. And it all happens through experiential, reality and project based learning.School gardens are a proven way to inspire children to eat healthier by getting more fruits and vegetables in their diet. Research has shown that people who participate in gardening are more likely to eat fruits and vegetables. Data also suggests that the more children are involved in growing and preparing healthy foods, the more likely they will eat them.Schools reach a majority of children in the United States. many children consume two meals at school, making it an important setting to reinforce healthy eating. If we provide children with a healthy environment and nutritious meals, snacks and beverages, they'll start to learn the importance of lifelong healthy behaviors.