Germinator Project 2017-2018


April 2017 – July 2018

Centipede Project engaged 3 local schools involving 250 children in Craigroyston Primary, Pirniehall Primary and St David’s Primary over the course of 18 months.

We introduced children to growing their own food including potatoes, beetroots, and carrots both inside and outside the classrooms. We also prepared paints from the raw vegetables, created artworks about the relationship between fruit and vegetables and a healthy body, and learned about the importance of soil to all life on earth.

Our outside growing spaces were at the Old Kirk and Muirhouse church, and in Muirhouse Avenue Five Fields, where we were pleased to see so many plants thriving throughout this summer.

The project culminated in a collaborative exhibition at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh in June/July 2018 and am A4 colour archive catalogue of the whole proejct. This can also be viewed online at

Germinator Summer Term: April 2017 – June 2017

Centipede have been working hard on the new education programme in local schools with 150 children in Craigroyston Primary, Pirniehall Primary and St David’s Primary.

Last term we introduced the children to growing their own mustard seedlings, potatoes, beetroots, and carrots both inside and outside the classrooms.

Our outside growing spaces are at the Old Kirk and Muirhouse church, and the Muirhouse Avenue planters, where we were pleased to see so many plants thriving throughout this summer.

The children have learned to make their own food too, sampling perhaps less popular vegetables, such as our delicious Beetroot and Chocolate cake and classic Egg and Cress sandwiches.

Alongside all this growing and planting activity, is the art side of things.  The children have been learning to draw from nature, by looking at potatoes, carrots and beetroots. Their wonderful drawings and paintings were transformed into artworks for our very splendid tea parties at the end of the summer term in the form of beautiful cake stands and table decorations.

This year we will be continuing the programme with harvesting, and making new paints and dyes from the produce, as well as the more traditional food. There will be presentations to the church for their Harvest Celebrations and new ways of looking at natural substances for creative processes. We will also be looking at where all food comes from ultimately; namely the soil!

These sessions will be available to p5, p6, and p7 in the schools listed above.

Germinator Autumn Term: August 2017 – December 2017

The Centipede Germinator Project has got off to an exciting start with p5, p6 and p7 experimenting with natural paints. We have made fantastic colours with our beetroots, carrots and then delved into the cupboards for turmeric, paprika and coffee. We have also been learning about the life cycle of the potato since we had such bumper crop earlier this term.

The potato harvest we grew this summer was offered to Old Kirk and Muirhouse Parish Church for their Harvest Service. Groups of children from Craigroyston and Pirniehall Primary Schools brought large boxes of tatties to the Church. Steven the minister prepared a really fun potato face making activity for the children who came and we left them in the church for decoration. Many thanks to all the children and teachers involved!

Children were working hard on their pumpkin anatomy paintings and they were taking out the pulp from the pumpkin to save the seeds for next year’s planting in Spring. We used Spice paint and blue pea tea for the green. The children saw that pumpkins come in all shapes and sizes and are related to Squash.

P5 6 and 7 at Craigroyston ps had great fun yesterday making wormeries for our soil based friends.  We look forward to seeing how mixed up the sand and soil layers in the bottles are next week.

Homemade wormeries turned out well and both girls and boys loved worms. To deepen our understanding that soil is alive we partnered up with ASCUS, an art-science facility. We commissioned Jiri Jirout, a soil scientist to prepare slides from soil based creatures and then observed them at the biology department of Craigroyston High School. Our drawings taken from observed creatures in the soil formed part of a huge collaborative artwork about the importance of soil as a habitat.

Germinator Spring term: January 2018 – March 2018
There was a fresh start to 2018! Three P6 classes from Craigroysten and Pierniehall were involved in a continuous artwork related to fruit and vegetables and their impact on human body. Children were researching about vitamins and minerals you get from various veg and fruit, and where it helps your body most.

Here are some pics of the children working on paintings for future use. Children were drawing their chosen veg and fruit, and painting it in with plant paint which was prepared specially for this artwork.

Today P6 excelled themselves finishing off their paintings of the fruits and veg they have been focussing on. They also made new paintings of human organs, and we had a look to see how our collaged artworks would look with all pictures attached.
If you are a parent at any of these schools, we would love to hear from you, especially since there will be day trips coming up which you might like to get involved in. For any queries and suggestions please contact

Photos: Peter Dibden, Lindsay Perth, Natalie Taylor and Irena Stehlikova.

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