the presentation. - Massachusetts Farm to School

Farm to School Curriculum Connections
Karyn Novakowski, Somerville Public Schools
Chris Mancini, Groundwork Somerville
Sarah Lindsay, Groundwork Somerville
Mass Farm to School Conference, January 13, 2015
Somerville Schools
Culturally rich city with 50
native languages spoken
Lunch served to ~3000
students daily at SPS
67% free and reduced lunch at SPS
~78,800 residents in ~4 sq
miles makes it the most
densely populated community
in New England
10 District Schools: PreK to 12 (5000 students)
1 Charter School: Prospect Hill Academy
Somerville Food and Nutrition Services
Salad bars at 7 K-8 Schools and High School
Fresh fruit and vegetable program at 3 K-8 schools
Events: Food Day, Corn Shucking Day
6 schools received Bronze award for HUSSC
Vegetable of the Month
Cafeteria and in-class taste tests
DoD Fresh
Farm to School Project
Shape Up Somerville Approved
Funding Farm to School in Somerville
Partner funded programs
USDA F2S Planning Grant:
• Strategically align all of the
district’s farm to school efforts
• Work with FNS on sourcing
local foods for school food
Groundwork Somerville – School Gardens
Project Bread – Healthy Summer Harvest
Funding through District
Somerville Family Learning Collaborative – Pop up
Literacy Workshop
Somerville Community Schools - Cooking Club
PEP Grant – Cooking Club, Food Literacy Programs
School discretionary budget – School Gardens
• Offer food education programs
• Develop short and long term
goals and implementation plan
Funding from within FNS
DoD Fresh – Local foods
Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program – Local foods
USDA Farm to School Planning Grant – planning,
taste tests, curriculum development, local
sourcing, school gardens
Mission and Goals
• Grow, cook, eat, repeat
• Cultivate a sense of place
• Advocate for good food
Project goals:
-Educate eaters about mindful eating and food systems
- Serve fresh, flavorful, nutritious locally grown, seasonal foods in school meals and snacks
- Develop school gardens as a viable resource for Somerville schools and community
- Support local farmers and the local economy
- Create a tangible link to the city of Somerville's urban agriculture, healthy living initiatives
Somerville Farm to School Programs
Cafeteria, Classroom, Community
Somerville Farm to School Programming
Cafeteria Taste Tests
In Class Taste Tests
One time garden lessons
One time special events: Ag Literacy
Week, Food Day, Corn Shucking Day
• Series lessons
• Afterschool programs: gardening,
cooking, arts, food justice
• Community events: SFLC Raising a
Cafeteria Taste Tests
A Tale of Two Apples
• 56% of students (~1800 students)
• 7 schools: 1 Early childhood center & 6 K-8 schools
• Single item tasting
In Class Sensory Taste Test
21% of students participated (560 students)
7 K-6 schools
June: Strawberry spinach salad
September: Baba ganoush
October/November: Moroccan Carrot Salad
One off garden lesson: Garlic planting
Series Lessons: First Grade
Fall alphabet garden
Garden treasure hunt, Create a
garden alphabet book
What plants need to
Read a book, Plant a seed
Parts of the plant 1
Stem experiment
Hummus and
Parts of the plant 2
(Roots and Leaves)
Root exploration, leaf
Carrot Salad
Parts of the plant 3
(Flowers and Fruits)
Pumpkin seed exploration
Wrap up
Curriculum adapted from Project Bread Healthy Summer Harvest
Afterschool Programming
Sowing seeds
Seedling farm
In the garden
Community education events
Somerville Family Learning Collaborative Raising a Reader
Mission: Groundwork Somerville strives to bring about the
sustained regeneration, improvement and management of
the physical environment through the development of
community-based partnerships which empower people,
businesses and organizations to promote environmental,
economic and social well-being.
Healthy Education
Green Jobs
Sustainable Community
Series Lessons: Farm to School Curriculum
Part I: Early Spring – Garden Curriculum
Day 1: Comparing food-growing capabilities of
different regions in the US
Day 2: Farms and Farmers in MA
Day 3: Assess conditions in schoolyard garden (space,
sun exposure, etc.)
Day 4: Make planting plan for garden
Day 5: Start seedlings
Part II: Late Spring
- One-day farmer’s visit to the
- Plant seedlings in school garden
- Farm field trip
Part III: Early Fall
- History of Corn curriculum is delivered in class
- Harvest in school garden
- Corn shucking and eating event!
Maple Syrup Project
Education: Maple-sugaring
themed curriculum is delivered
in Somerville’s public 2nd grade
Harvest: Sugar maples are
tapped on Tufts campus, sap is
Boil Down: Collected sap is
made into syrup in a fun and
educational 2-day event at the
Somerville Growing Center (the
first day is a field trip for 2nd
graders, the second day is open
to the community)
Garden Builds
- Creation of urban growing sites and garden
spaces at schools
- Involvement of community/school in building
After School Programs
Preparing school garden for a new season
Garden maintenance
Planting (bulbs in Fall, seeds in Spring)
Building and maintaining a compost bin
Contact us!
Karyn Novakowski
Somerville Farm to School Project Director
Somerville Public Schools
Chris Mancini
Executive Director
Groundwork Somerville
Sarah Lindsay
Service Learning Coordinator
Mass Farm to School Conference, January 13, 2015