FRESHFARM's food education program in partnership with DC Public Schools

FoodPrints is an education project of FRESHFARM that integrates gardening, cooking, and nutrition education into the curriculum at partner elementary schools. Watch the FoodPrints video to see our program in action. 

Confident 3rd Grade Cooks - by Jenn Mampara

For the last two Fridays, Third Graders at SWS have ventured into their first foray in independent cooking. Adults were assigned to the small groups to answer questions, serve as a guide, remind students over and over and over to read and reread the recipe, and to manage the heat.  However, otherwise, students were in charge – and boy were they ready.  These two classes have been gardening, harvesting and cooking with FoodPrints since they were 4 years old in Pre-K.  This is their fifth year of honing their skills, and the lunch they prepared would have even impressed Jose Andres.

They began by reading their recipes carefully, and then headed out to the garden to harvest spring ingredients.

Upstairs in the kitchen, they combined the harvest from their garden with the harvest from FRESHFARM Markets.  They turned asparagus from Spring Valley Farm into a beautiful Asparagus Gruyere Tart sprinkled with chives from their garden.

They ground flour from wheat berries grown by Next Step Produce and combined them with carrots from New Morning Farm to make delicious muffins.

They used eggs from Sunnyside Farm, goat cheese from Firefly, onions from Twin Springs, the Swiss chard from their garden, and the assistance of a volunteer grandparent to make a beautiful frittata.

And, Tuscan kale from their garden and from Tree and Leaf Farm to make a Kale Caesar Salad.

Here are a few of their reflections at the end of the day.

  “Are you a gardener?  Have extra vegetables from the spring?  Here is a group of recipes that can make a great meal.  This also is a great meal to give your child an opportunity to cook a meal with supervision.  Picking the vegetable from the garden will give the child confidence to cook the rest of the meal.  It will also increase the child’s following directions skills.” 

I couldn’t have said it better myself!

- Written by Jenn Mampara