My students need cooking utensils, gardening books and tools in order to plant, harvest and cook from the school garden.
I am in a California inner-city Pre-K-5 public elementary school. Our student population is a mixture of diverse ethnic groups with the majority of Asian decent. Most students are first generation born with ninety-four percent of our students qualifying for free or reduced lunches. Sixty-seven percent of our English language learner student population is basic or below basic in reading and comprehension. Our program includes Chinese bilingual classes as well as regular general education classes for native and non-native English Speakers.
As other children in the United States, our students too are removed from his/her food source. Gardening is our chance to partner with Mother nature. These past months, we have been focused on garden etiquette such as where to walk and learning about the consequences of good (or poor) care (watering , weeding, and now cultivating). Students also have been learning patience in the garden as nature takes its course. Today, we wish to move forward with harvesting what we have planted and bring our plants to the table. Growing our own food and actually eating what we have planted expands a young student's choice of foods, a key to good nutrition. Most importantly, the pathway to better health and nutrition is right out side the classroom doors. Having utensils such as knives and bowls help my students gather food from the garden. Hand and food washing soaps are essential for good hygiene while handling soil as books related to gardening support our continued learning.
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