In the last four weeks, FoodCorps service members, Ian and Sumer have taught a total of 47 Farm to School lessons in four Habersham County schools. These lessons were taught in 8th grade social studies and science, 7th grade social studies and science, agriculture connections and high school culinary arts classes. Each of these lessons was developed to coincide with the state’s core educational standards the students were learning in their classes.
Ian and Sumer taught a lesson to every 8th grade social studies class in Wilbanks, South Habersham and North Habersham middle schools, where students learned about the importance of corn to colonial America and the Native Americans. Students got to experience a hands-on activity where they shelled and ground corn into cornmeal, and then learned how to cook a traditional colonial dish, Hoecakes, with the use of a mobile cooking cart, which is provided to each school from the Northeast Georgia Farm to School program. The hoecakes were made from a cornmeal provided from a local miller, Linda Johnson, Sylvan Falls Mill. After students learned how to cook the recipe, they enjoy eating them and share their creative ideas of how they would make their own Hoecake recipe based on their personal tastes and preferences.
Lessons were also taught in 8th grade science, where students learned about pure substances and mixtures and made their own fruit salad and whipped cream, to represent a heterogeneous mixture and colloid. 7th grade social studies learned all about agriculture in the Middle East and how crop residues and wastes can be utilized to make liquid fuels. Students also enjoyed a traditional Middle Eastern dish, hummus, made from ingredients commonly grown in the Middle East, chickpeas and olive oil. 7th grade science students, currently learning about the human body organ systems, learned about how different nutrients and colored foods are good for different parts of the body and help certain organs function better. Agriculture connections classes learned about aquaponics and how seeds are formed, how to read a seed packet, and got their hands dirty by planting radish seeds in their school garden. Those students have enjoyed watching their radishes grow and will have the opportunity to harvest, cook, and eat their radishes within the next week or so. Students in the Habersham Central High School Culinary Arts program, lead by Denise Dorsey, have enjoyed lessons about culinary sustainability, including how to maintain their own garden, composting and using sustainable practices in the kitchen.
The FoodCorps service members look forward to the next nine weeks of school, where they will be teaching lessons in 6th grade science, 7th grade math and 8th grade math just to name a few. Students have been enjoying the hands-on Farm to School lessons and have especially enjoyed getting to eat delicious and nutritious foods!