Backyard Growers has established award-winning School Garden and Farm to School Programs in Gloucester Public Schools. Our model educates students about how to grow their own healthy, fresh produce in School Gardens and stimulates thinking about where their food comes from. We’re committed to inspiring a new generation of healthy eaters and building stronger, more connected, environmentally sustainable communities.
Our model is now being adopted by other school districits, and we love working with educators to bring our programs to new communities.
Want to learn more about our programs and how you can bring them to your school district?
Pre-K through 5th Grade
Gloucester Public School students engage in fun, educational in-school programs that teach them about the food system, the garden ecosystem and the science behind growing food. This program meets common core standards.
Elementary School Salad Days and Fall Harvest Days
Students encounter new vegetables and healthy snack options through creative cafeteria experiences like Salad Days and Fall Harvest Days. These experiences allow them to follow their food’s journey from seed to fork, as they plant greens and fresh vegetables in the spring, harvest them that same season for Salad Days or in the fall for Fall Harvest Days, and enjoy them together as a group.
Pre-School Salad Days and Fall Harvest Days
Kids get their hands dirty young in Gloucester! We offer a program for preschool students in which they plant salad greens for a June Salad Party and plant fall harvest produce to coincide with their Stone Soup curriculum.
Harvest of the Month
Backyard Growers staff and service members lead cafeteria taste tests with local, fresh vegetables throughout the district in collaboration with the School Food Service Department. Students taste test a range of fresh, delicious produce prepared in both simple and innovative ways, introducing them to new favorite foods and allowing them to weigh in on whether they liked it, loved it, or weren’t quite convinced.
To bring these programs to your own school district, contact our Associate Director of School Programs.
Gloucester Public School students experience their food both as seeds growing into produce in their School Garden and in lesson plans that are fully integrated with a range of curricula.
Backyard Growers collaborated with the science department at O’Maley Innovation Middle School to build its School Garden. The garden includes a wheat garden for 7th graders, which allows them to experience making their own bread from the very start – planting a seed and growing their own wheat to processing and harvesting their crop to bake into bread. The program is fully integrated with other coursework as they study the impact of grains and ancient civilization in their history classes.
Sixth graders plant their own corn in the spring to harvest, dry and pop into popcorn in the fall in collaboration with science, history and English curricula. Students are able to make connections between growing their own food and a range of other coursework while enjoying a tasty snack they grew themselves.
Want to transform the way your middle schoolers think about food?