Two elementary schools designed and installed school gardens, one high school expanded
an existing garden with additional beds and perennial fruits, three schools have cooked state standards using mobile cooking carts in the classroom. Each school team created and taught at least three standards-based lessons between September and December 2015 that engaged students in hands-on culinary or garden activities.
Third graders practiced research methods, guided by the Media Specialist and FoodCorps service member, by conducting garden observations. Then, students used library resources to
complete a flow map detailing the life cycle of the chosen garden plant.
A high school self-contained special education class planted, weeded, watered, and learned to prepare the harvest from the school garden.
An elementary EBD class used daily recess time to be the school gardeners – filling garden beds one bucket full at a time from the donated pile of garden soil, planting transplants, weeding, adding compost to the beds, and loving being outside and fully engaged in learning.
History was made after an apple taste test. The cafeteria manager reported that the day after the taste test, the cafeteria sold out of the fresh fruit option (whole apples that were taste tested) for the first time ever. Local farm-to-table chefs taught classroom lessons about cooking kale, sweet potatoes, beets, and creating healthy snacks to elementary through high school students.
In August, six schools, three in Habersham Co and three in Rabun Co, were awarded Northeast Georgia Farm to School mini-grants for either a school garden or a cooking cart package. On Thursday, December 10, 2015, each school participated in the Northeast Georgia Farm to School Showcase to present their accomplishments and their goals for growing their newly established Farm to School programs. An incredible impact has already been made in classrooms, cafeterias, and student and teachers’ lives in just three short months of Farm to School activity.
Kudos to the Northeast Georgia Farm to School teams for their great work, enthusiasm and dedication to farm to school! We look forward to watching your farm to school programs grow and inspire. You certainly inspired us with your Showcase presentations! Read FoodCorps Fellow Stephanie Simmons Top 10 Favorites from the Showcase in the Georgia Organics Daily Dirt.
Northeast Georgia Farm to School Teams: Level Grove Elementary, Cornelia Elementary, Habersham Central High, Rabun County Elementary, Rabun County Middle, Rabun County High Wildcat Academy.