November 10, 2010

Chilmark School Holds First All-Local Community Lunch

On Friday, October 15th, all of the students and staff of Chilmark School sat down together with parents and community volunteers to share the first of what they hope will be a series of special lunches made with local ingredients by guest chefs. The first lunch was made by Jan Buhrman and Robert Lionette of Kitchen Porch Catering and Slow Food. It featured meat loaf made with meat from Pasture Hill Farm in Chilmark, corn from Morning Glory Farm, and kale and sweet potatoes from Mermaid Farm in Chilmark. Photo by Meg Higgins The school PTO made it possible for every student to enjoy this delicious meal.
Photo by Meg Higgins
Island Grown Schools organized the event to provide a special experience for the students and to experiment with a different approach to school meals. Lunch time is a learning part of the school day just like class time, says Noli Taylor, IGS Coordinator. It is a chance to teach students that healthy food can be delicious, to think about where their food comes from, and to learn how to share a meal and conversation with family and community. Chilmark School is a wonderful community to experiment with a different approach to school lunch that really takes advantage of lunch time as a time for learning. Students, parents, and staff sat together at tables laid out with tablecloths, flowers, real plates and forks and napkins. Comments heard around the room included "I love kale!", "This is the best meal I ever had!" and "I hope we do this every month". Parents were amazed to see their kids eating vegetables they had never been willing to try at home.
After the meal, students participated in a series of harvest-related activities, including apple cider pressing, learning about bees and pollination with Island Grown Initiative's observation hive, and digging potatoes and carrots from the school garden. Photo by Meg Higgins