What is Farm-2-Table?
Farm-2-Table is a continuation of Community Bridges program centered on first grade students. Each month, approximately 220 students from Williams and Riddle Elementary Schools participate in Farm-2-Table where they learn about a farming or agricultural community.
Upon arrival at the Fit-2-Serve facility, students are led through a truly unique classroom experience as they learn and gain an appreciation for all the people we never meet who provide all the food we eat!
Each month, an agricultural community is featured for students learn about the work of a farmer and the produce or product realized from that community. In the Teaching Kitchen next door, students follow and make a recipe that centers on the food product from that community. In addition, students don their ‘try-it shoes’ and sample foods grown by the farmer.
Students are introduced to the word, ingredients . . . a big 11-letter word for a 1st grader. The goal is two-fold. First, students measure and add ingredients when following a recipe while in the Teaching Kitchen. Second, they are challenged to find the word on packages of foods commonly found in the home. Mid-year they learn the words nutrition and nutrients. By the end of the school year, students understand the importance of knowing the ingredients list and are able to make healthier food and drink choices.
Researchers have shown that encouraging kids to get involved in meal preparation is an effective health promotion strategy for schools and parents. Click here for more info.
Here is what the students have done this year!
Students were introduced to kitchen utensils, where their food comes from (farm/farmer) & how seeds turn into produce. In the Teaching Kitchen, students made fresh carrot cookies, carrot curls, & taste-tested rainbow carrots & sweet bell peppers.
Apples & Friends
The students learned about orchards, pollination, & dehydration. They were introduced to the word "ingredients" to begin process of identifying what is listed on the packages of foods they eat. In the Teaching Kitchen the students wedged & cored fresh apples, measured ingredients to make Friendship Apple Butter, & taste-tested 4 varieties of fresh apples along with a dehydrated apple.
Heard it Through the Grapevines
The students learned about vines, & vineyards. They learned fun facts about grapes & how they grow. The students reviewed ingredients on packages & selected the healthier options. In the Teaching Kitchen, they made healthy Grape Gummy Bears, taste-tested a variety of grapes & raisins, & signed & decorated 'grapeful' cards that were distributed to local grocery stores the week of Thanksgiving to show appreciation for the 'people we never meet who give us the food we eat.'
Holy Whole Grains
The students learned the parts of a whole grain and what it means to have an enriched grain, refined grain and a whole wheat grain. They searched for the whole wheat stamps located on different packages. They got to make flour using a mill & wheat berries & were shown the difference between whole wheat & regular flour. In the Teaching Kitchen the students made healthy energy bites, & taste-tested a variety of breads & pasta noodles.
Potatoes Have Eyes
The students learned that potatoes have eyes or seed potatoes. They searched for the ingredients list & found "potatoes" on each package. They also got to match up real potatoes with pictures of the potatoes. The students became potato farmers & planted their own seed potatoes & create soil hills. In the teaching kitchen, the students made potato biscuits using the whole wheat flour they milled in December. They also taste-tested red, yellow, & purple roasted potatoes.
Peeps, Hens & Roosters
The students learned all about chickens! In the classroom they searched for "eggs" on the ingredient list of packages, and got to discover what chickens like to eat. They also learned the different parts of an egg. In the kitchen the students made "green egg and ham" muffin cups. They cut their own spinach leaves, ham and even got to crack an egg! For the taste test, we used the eggs they cracked & beat to make scrambled eggs. The students also got to try a meringue cookie!
A Visit to the Dairy Factory
The students learned all about dairy farmers! In the classroom they learned some fun facts about cows, "milked a cow", saw a REAL cow pie, and made REAL butter. In the kitchen, the students had a cheese taste test. They tasted over 10 different kinds of cheese! At the end of their taste test the students were given a "MOO-shake" made with REAL whipped cream.
For the final 2021-2022 Farm-2-Table session, the students learned about what happens to our bodies when we eat something. In the classroom, the students had a bite of pizza to start the digestion process, learned how different foods help different parts of our bodies, & learned about the five senses and the role they play in digestion. In the teaching kitchen, the students got to make their own smoothie recipe using healthy ingredients!
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