Monday, October 24, 2016

Harvest Season in Full Swing at Somerville Public Schools!

We’ve had a busy Fall season in the gardens! This week will wrap up the final, yet very important, chore of “putting the garden to bed”! Parent volunteers, students, and educators have been hard at work since the beginning of school, harvesting and tasting a variety of vegetables, saving tomato seeds, and planting garlic! Now it’s time to say goodnight to the gardens, as we learn about the importance of cover crops, mulching, and how some plants survive during the winter. Lower elementary school students have been engaged and directly involved in making sure our gardens stay healthy over the winter until we wake them up in the Spring!

We also celebrated our annual Corn Shucking and Local Harvest Day! With the help of community partner volunteers (Groundwork, Shape Up, UMass), parents, and students we shucked over 3,000 ears of corn before school even started! The children enjoyed the fruits of their labor with a local beef burger for lunch! Corn Shucking is always a favorite day of the school year for student and staff, and this year proved no different. Thanks to garden champion and parent volunteer, Jen, we have the Healey School's corn data, by the numbers:

number of ears shucked:  480  (8 bags w 60 ears each, the kids did the math)
number of minutes to shuck 480 ears of corn: 32
number of student shuckers:  30 give or take
number of volunteer shuckers: 4
number of staff: 5
number of corn earworms found: 4
corny jokes recited:  2
amount of fun had at Healey on Corn Shucking Day: some things can't be measured.

Local Happenings:
Concord, Massachusetts will host the Farm-Based Education Conference on November 4th-6th
This will be a great opportunity for anyone interested in effectively incorporating gardening into daily school curriculum.

Drumlin Farms, who provides farm fresh veggies to our salad bars, has a long list of exciting classes to meet everyone’s interests! Register here

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