The Pacific Crest Farm
Located on Vashon Island, the Pacific Crest Farm is an integral part of our community and an ideal way to bring the classroom into the natural world and to bring the outside world into the classroom.
Primary students and their families enjoy attending all-school events in the Fall and Spring as well as volunteering for Farm work parties. As students move to Elementary, and then Middle School their involvement with the Farm becomes more frequent and is focused on day-to-day operations. The Farm, with its roadside farm stand and presence at the weekly farmers market is also a valued member of the Vashon Island community.
The Farm offers students the capacity to work and study in a natural setting that serves a different purpose for students at each level. For the primary students, going to the Farm is a beginning of the process of going out into the world that becomes an essential part of their elementary experience. The older Primary students visit the Farm in each of the seasons, allowing them to observe the effect of nature on place.
For the Elementary student, the Farm serves as a tangible example of the great lessons of fundamental needs and the capacity of human beings. The Farm offers the children the chance to participate in activities similar to their ancestors: the working of the earth, the sowing of seeds, weeding, harvesting and the production of food. For the Elementary students, the Farm is the source of questions and investigations. Studies in science and nature are offered in abundance by trips to the Farm.
Montessori felt that it was essential that the adolescent spend time in a natural setting. In nature, the adolescent can find independence and tranquility which they can translate into art or verse. On the Farm, the Middle school students involve themselves in the meaningful work of food production and the study of the economics of food production. Their sense of community is enriched by working side by side in the fields or preparing a meal for each other at the Farm