Strike a Chord: Edible Schoolyard NYC Brings Plants to the...
At P.S. 216 in Gravesend Brooklyn, a third grade class just finished a scavenger hunt all about bugs. The class is learning about the interdependence of species. They’re identifying bugs behind the school, but the schoolyard itself is not typical. There’s no concrete or metal playgrounds here. This schoolyard is like a mini farm, complete with a greenhouse and compost.
Kate Brashares is the executive director of Edible Schoolyard. On a tour of the schoolyard, she described the newest project in the schoolyard.
"What you see in this corner over here is we’re building a chicken coop. So there’ll be a chicken coop there and this is going to be their run. And it’ll be an enclosed run so they’re safe from predators and rodents," said Brashares
The chickens are the newest addition to a program that came to New York City in 2010. It was modeled off the Edible Schoolyard program in Berkeley, California. Teachers at Edible Schoolyard NYC present lessons to classes twice a month about the environment, sustainability, and healthy eating.
"You learn through doing. It’s very very hands on. We believe that kids learn best that way and because they’re doing it sticks with them," said Brashares.
Two schools in underprivileged areas of New York currently have Edible Schoolyards where a total of 1200 students learn to cultivate and cook food.