The Food and Agriculture Literacy Center at Mykawa Farm is a labor of love made possible by HISD’s dedicated Nutrition Services Department. Mykawa caretakers welcomed two classes from Young Elementary School and Attucks Middle School for a Fall Harvest Festival to celebrate a successful planting season.
Students were invited to participate in different activity stations, including a cooking demonstration by Chef Brittany Jones and a walk through the rows of mature and harvest-ready vegetables.
Mykawa Farm is a working educational farm with the goal of providing students with an understanding of where their food comes from and how healthy produce can benefit them in their everyday lives. Since its inception at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Mykawa Farm hasn’t had many opportunities to welcome students for in-person field trips, but the Nutrition Services staff hope that this visit will be the first of many more to come.
With the weather cooling down and Halloween on the way, the team at Mykawa Farm saw an opportunity to bring multiple campuses together for a day of nutrition literacy and sustainable farming education. “We hope that they learn to love the outdoors, learn a little bit about composting, learn a fun recipe, learn a little bit about nutrition, and get to plant some vegetables,” said Nan Cramer, Nutrition Services Director.
The students also got to witness the life cycle of the produce grown there in fast-forward—planting spinach seedlings, harvesting produce, and learning to use that produce to prepare a healthy snack all in one day.
Harvest Festival organizers made sure there was time for some unmitigated Autumn fun and invited the students to paint mini-pumpkins and participate in a scavenger hunt where they sought out little jack-o-lanterns full of fun prizes.
The more students can associate sustainable farming with fun, the closer the Food and Agriculture Literacy Center comes to realizing its goal of creating food security for all HISD students.