Do you really know where your food is coming from? On November 23, 2015, twenty-three fifth grade students at Avery Elementary school in Dedham participated in a lesson called “Farm to Table,” developed and taught by FSU Food and Nutrition intern, Noell Redfern. The lesson introduced students to the concept of farm to table and encouraged students to eat local and seasonal foods.
Where does your food come from? Where does its journey to your plate begin? How far does your food travel? During the lesson, students learned how to answer these questions and discovered that local and seasonal foods are healthier for the environment and our bodies.
To begin the lesson, students identified where certain fruits and vegetables came from by using food packaging. Students were surprised to learn that the fruits and vegetables came from Mexico, Canada, Chile, and California. They learned that foods with a lot of food miles not only require more fuel to travel, but they lose more nutrients the longer they travel. At the end of the lesson, students discussed seasonal fruits and vegetables. The students each created a meal using seasonal ingredients to demonstrate what they learned.
Dedham Public Schools’ Wellness Policy states, “the Nutrition Education Program will impart to each student ‘the knowledge and skills to select a diet that supports health and reduces the risk of illness and future chronic diseases.’” Dedham Public Schools accomplish this goal by integrating nutrition education into the core academic curriculum.
For more resources on wellness policies and ways to incorporate nutrition education at your school, visit the School Wellness Initiative and Policies page at the JSI Resource Center and the Wellness Solution for Massachusetts website.
Submitted by: Noell Redfern, FSU Food and Nutrition Student