Developing future food educators
This school year, FRESHFARM is hosting FoodCorps members who are serving in FoodPrints schools as part of the AmeriCorps national service program. These young people -- who are interested in urban farming, urban food systems, and education -- each work in one of our DC public partner elementary schools in Wards 6 and 7 during the 2016-2017 school year.
FoodCorps service members are reliable, positive adults who serve in schools that share the FoodPrints mission of empowering kids to choose healthy foods. Our FoodCorps fellows are invaluable members of our team, both through their work supporting classes and in their efforts improving the overall school food culture:
* Each FoodCorps member serves as an assistant FoodPrints teacher, which reduces the student-to-teacher ratio in FoodPrints classes. They are another set of thoughtful eyes and ears in the classroom, building relationships with students and classroom teachers and giving the lead FoodPrints teacher feedback on student and volunteer responses to the lesson.
* Each FoodCorps member works on other aspects of creating a healthy food environment at his or her assigned school. They are present in the cafeteria, the garden, and elsewhere in the school, informally talking with students and working with them on ways to understand nutrition and healthy eating, encouraging composting, and being a positive adult role model. They build community with teachers, administrators, and families, and often participate in an existing -- or help form -- the school’s Health and Wellness Committee (as mandated by the DC Healthy Schools Act). And FoodCorps members help manage the school garden, often engaging with students during recess and after school.
FRESHFARM helps to develop these future food educators by giving them opportunities for hands-on teaching and gardening, training, support, and mentoring from experienced educators along the way.