Students learn about STEM, nutrition and conservation in a hands-on, natural laboratory with Green Our Planet’s STEMworks-accredited, K-5 Hydroponics STEM Program. Learn what hydroponics is and why it’s such a powerful teaching tool below.
What is Hydroponics?
The word hydroponics comes from a combination of the Greek word hydro, which means “of water,” and the Greek word ponos, which means “work.”
Hydroponics is the science of cultivating plants in a nutrient-rich solution instead of soil, where the water does the “work” of delivering nutrients to the plant’s roots. Because the roots are bathed in a nutrient solution, there is constant nourishment for the plants.
Grow Vegetables Anywhere
Since hydroponic gardens don’t require soil and can be kept indoors, they are perfect for schools that can’t grow plants outside in the winter. Indoor, climate-controlled hydroponic systems make food production and education possible any time of the year in any weather condition.
Hydroponics also make it possible to grow in locations where poor soil conditions or limited space prevent growing plants traditionally in soil.
Produce More And Up To Two Times Faster
To increase planting density and food production, our hydroponic systems are designed to make use of vertical space.
One fifth-grade classroom hydroponic system with two growing levels and taking up 3’ x 4’ of space can grow up to 208 plants, which is the same amount of food as four 8’ x 4’ outdoor garden beds would produce.
Plants also grow up to 2x more quickly with hydroponics versus soil-based gardening.
Most hydroponic systems are kept indoors, which allows students to improve plant production by controlling the temperature and lighting schedules.
Students can also control the pH and nutrients of the nutrient solution to make sure plants get the exact nourishment they need.