Evaluation of the Impact of School Garden Exposure on Youth Outlook and Behaviors toward Vegetables in Southern Arizona

Abby M. Lohr, Nick Henry, Denise Roe, Claudio Rodriguez, Rosalva Romero, Maia Ingram

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Our objective was to evaluate the effect of garden-based learning on outlook and behaviors toward vegetables among primarily Latinx students. An educational strategy, garden-based learning is a teaching tool that complements other disciplines. METHODS: Third- and fourth-grade students at 4 elementary schools with different garden programs completed a bingo survey and participated in class discussions to measure outlook and behaviors toward vegetables. RESULTS: Students in schools with more garden exposure were more likely to answer “Yes” to survey questions reflecting a positive attitude and behaviors toward vegetables. In class discussions, students most often mentioned vegetables grown in the school garden as their favorite vegetables. CONCLUSION: For third- and fourth-grade students, the length of exposure to a school garden appears to have a positive impact on both perceptions of and desire to consume vegetables. Other studies have shown that positive outlook and behaviors toward vegetables can change vegetable consumption habits in children. Integrating garden-based learning into the school curriculum may positively influence eating behaviors over the long-term future.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)572-581
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of School Health
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2020


  • Latino health
  • child and adolescent health
  • health program evaluation
  • nutrition and diet
  • public health
  • school gardens

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Philosophy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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