What’s Growing On? May 2022 News from Grow Education
by: Adam Davenport, Grow Education Program Manager
April showers bring May flowers, lettuce, parsley, garlic, and kale to the gardens of New Bedford Public School students. In partnership with teachers and students, we have been conducting our Spring Planting Days at 12 elementary schools across the district. Each school enrolled in the Grow Education program gets a total of three planting days over the course of April, May, and June giving students three separate opportunities to get into the gardens, get their hands dirty planting seeds and seedlings, and the chance to harvest and try some of their cultivated veggies before the end of the school year.
Inside the schools our Food Corps members have been diligently working to keep students taste buds open to new flavors and textures through weekly taste-tests of vegetables, dips, and salads. FoodCorps member Jenn Frates, has led the way with her experience as a chef, of creating new recipes and improving upon the best methods for serving and evaluating student’s response to the taste-tests. Jenn recently trialed a homemade chocolate hummus recipe that she adapted to make with ingredients available from NBPS Food Service Department. She served the hummus with fresh strawberries for an instant win with students. These taste-tests pave the way for student participation and buy-in for the new and culturally-relevant menu items that the Food Service Department is working on developing and preparing for upcoming school menus.