Tag Archives: harvest of the month

Small Steps are Huge Wins: Two Months of Service Told in Haikus

Written By: Amy Garfinkel, FoodCorps Service Member with San Diego Unified School District

Healthy school meal options in San Diego Unified include: savory tortilla soup, scratch-cooked ribs, whole grain buns, fat-free milk, and a plethora of fresh fruits and veggies from the salad bar.

Healthy school meal options in San Diego Unified include: savory tortilla soup, scratch-cooked ribs, whole grain buns, fat-free milk, and a plethora of fresh fruits and veggies from the salad bar.

It’s September 1st
I’m thrilled to start my service
It’s a dream come true.

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Los Angeles Preschoolers Enjoy Harvest of the Month from Local Farms

Written by Rosa Romero, MEd – Farm to Preschool Director, Urban & Environmental Policy Institute

There is an exciting new Farm to Preschool Pilot underway in Los Angeles! Since 2009, the Farm to Preschool (F2P) Program at the Urban & Environmental Policy Institute at Occidental College (UEPI) has partnered with Pacific Asian Consortium in Employment Early Childhood Education (PACE ECE) to develop curriculum to promote healthy eating and an understanding of where food comes from. PACE ECE operates 14 fully licensed Head Start State Preschool child-care and development centers serving 1,110 children age three to five throughout Los Angeles. Over the past few years UEPI and PACE ECE developed a comprehensive model Wellness Policy for Healthy Eating and Physical Activity that incorporates mandated policies such as making drinking water available to students indoors and outdoors (Assembly Bill 2084), offering nutrition and health education classes for parents (Head Start  Performance Standards: 1304.23d) as well as specific F2P components of incorporating local foods into meals and snacks, weekly nutrition lessons, taste tests, gardening, and connecting with regional farmers through field-trips to farms and farmers’ market and classroom visits by farmers. This model wellness policy has been used to train dozens of preschools in the Los Angeles area on how to create similar policies at their sites. Continue reading

Harvest of the Month in Konocti Unified School District

Written by: Ben Feldman, FoodCorps Service Member with North Coast Opportunities

When my elementary school students see me on campus, they eagerly yell at me, sometimes all the way across playgrounds and long hallways, “Hi, Mr. Ben!” But when my students see me running errands at the hardware store or pharmacy, they usually seem a bit shy and confused (I suspect many of them think Mr. Ben lives in the school garden and never leaves).  Continue reading

Farm Stands and Schools: How to Successfully Sell Produce to Elementary Students

Written by: Hayley Baumgartner, FoodCorps Service Member with Center for Healthy Communities 

FullSizeRender“Hey!, Hey!!, HEEEYYYY!!! What do you guys have today??” a pair of fourth grade girls call to me through the chain link fence as I am setting up a farm stand booth in the hot valley sun. “We have strawberries today,” I call back and they squeal “YESSSS!” in excitement as they jump up and down. “We brought money today” they tell me enthusiastically.  Continue reading

Farmer to School Mixer a Hit in the South Central Coast

Written by: Luisa Accorsi, FoodCorps Service Member with Conejo Valley Unified School District

IMG_0597Getting connected is a big goal for the participants of the South Central Coast Regional of the CA Farm to School Network. This particular network includes Conejo Valley, Ventura, Rio, Oxnard, Hueneme, and Ojai. Last month we threw a mixer with the intention of bringing together our food service directors, farmers, and garden and nutrition educators so that we could get to know one another better and show each other what we’re doing at our sites. Continue reading

Taste Tests as an Agent for Change

Written by: Jen Swanstrom, FoodCorps Service Member with Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF) North Coast

In a nation where nine out of ten kids do not eat enough vegetables every day, I am thrilleDecHOTM_turnip taste testd to be serving in a position that allows me to help build enthusiasm around healthy foods instead of chips, soda, or sugary treats. It may not seem like the easiest of tasks, but through fun lessons and repeated exposure, I have seen very real excitement around trying new vegetables!

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