The best method for ensuring we have a bright future is teaching the children of today. Society has become more and more disconnected with where our food comes from and this has caused waves of problems for both our environment and our health. One way to combat this unhealthy habit we have formed is to plant gardens so we experience growing food in a firsthand way to understand where healthy food comes from. As part of the Green Apple Day of service at Berea College we decided to help ignite some of the bright future we have in the community.
Our project consisted of teaching the children at our community day care facility, the Child Development Laboratory (CDL), how to plant microgreens. Using milk cartons the CDL recycles, our Sustainable Foods Coordinator, Josh, cut holes in the side of them to try and create a mini version of a green house. We helped the children spread dirt in their mini green houses and sprinkle seeds topped with a final layer of soil and water.
Just giving the children a hands on experience with planting isn’t enough to really teach them the importance of what they were doing and what will come from this milk jug with dirt and seeds. Josh read a book that was filled with all kinds of vegetables and other foods and explained how they grew from seeds like what they had planted themselves.
Joan Pauly, our boss, said one of her favorite moments was when she asked a child, “Do plants grow from the sky?” and the child responded with an exaggerated, “Yes.”
Josh said one of his favorite moments was when a little kid was determined to push all of his seeds through the handle of the milk jug.
In a few weeks when the seeds have grown the children will have the opportunity to eat the greens that they grew. We hope to see how they make connections with the food they eat and where it comes from.