They say in Gardening, "Feed the SOIL (Not the Plant)" | Mr. Zach's Playful Learner Blog, Topic #1: Teaching from the Top-Down

Welcome to "The Playful Learner!"

For those of you who don’t already know me, my name is Zach Tolan. I’m a father, a teacher, an inventor, and a very enthusiastic learner. I’ve taught music for many years, and in that time I've specialized in growing young musicians "from seed," that is to say, being their first teacher. 

This post is just an introduction, and I titled it "Feed the Soil, Not the Plant."

(Yes, I'm proud that I grew this basil plant from seed!)

They say in gardening, “Feed the soil, not the plant.” 

See, we can't get nutrients directly into the roots of the plant... but we can put fertilizer in the root's path to ensure they absorb what they can, when they're able. Therefore, we feed the soil to feed the plant.


  • Children are the plants. They are able to grow like mighty oak trees!  
  • Their environment is the soil. They are spreading their roots out every waking moment, absorbing...
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