I posted a few weeks ago about our PTA’s plans for celebrating Food Day at our local elementary school. Our school if from Pre-K to 5th grade and has just over 530 students. Well, I wanted to let you know that it went great.
We had a lot of support from the community and from other PTA parents, as well at the teachers. Our speakers included: Matt Runkle of Native Roots Market, Becky Black from the OSU Extension Office, a local farmer William Edgar, Wanda Danley from the Norman Farmer’s Market, Prof. Deborah Dalton from OU’s Interdisciplinary Perspectives on the Environment program, and one of our PTA moms that did double duty, Laura Vaughn, who is an enthusiastic home gardener. We are very thankful to all our speakers, especially considering the short timeline in planning the event.
We had gotten produce donations from Native Roots Market, Natural Grocers, and our local Homeland store. That was supplemented with some extra veggies funded by the PTA and then several parents sent enough of their kids favorite fruit or veggie for that child’s class. All the kids got to taste broccoli, apples, celery, spinach, grapes, bananas, summer squash, carrots, mushrooms, and peppers. We also had samples of fresh ginger and basil to try.
Volunteers from OU’s OUr Earth student organization helped throughout the day. They guided the speakers from class to class and helped the teachers serve the fruits and vegetables during the tasting.
Prior to Food Day, we put posters up around the school announcing it and we also included a flyer in the kids’ “Thursday Folder” that goes home to parents each week. That is where we invited parents to send additional fruits and veggies for their child’s class.
The morning of Food Day, the school started the day with their regular Monday Morning Assembly, but it included an introduction to Food Day and a blindfolded fruit and veggie tasting with three of the teachers. The kids loved that part. We had the teachers taste all of the fruits and veggies that the students would be trying later that day.
Then, during the class’ regular “snacktime” the speakers talked for about 10 minutes about where your food comes from and making healthy food choices including eating more fruits and vegetables.
The cafeteria also joined in during lunchtime by highlighting the Sodexo “Fruit of the Month” for October which was grapes.
Here are some pictures of our Food Day speakers in the classrooms: