Classroom to Farm Brings Bounty to Students

e-Connections Post Camellia Basic Ethel I. Baker Ethel Phillips Pacific Oak Ridge

From January to mid-May, more than 430 elementary students will learn that classroom to farm is almost as much fun as farm-to-fork as they visit Soil Born Farms, an urban agricultural and educational project.

Kindergarten through fifth grade students from Pacific, Oak Ridge, Ethel Phillips, Ethel I. Baker and Camellia Basic will visit Soil Born and learn about composting, pollination, grafting, chickens and taste fresh fruits and vegetables. The visit also adds to learning taking place in their own campus gardens. This week, Camellia fourth grade students from Amanda Pham’s class visited the urban farm.

“Field trips to Soil Born Farms and working in the community garden at Camellia help students learn where foods come from,” Pham said. Most importantly, we want students to eat healthy and to be healthy. Also, students get fresh air and become active by weeding, planting, harvesting and giggling while tasting their fruits of labor.”

Shannon Hardwicke, Soil Born’s Youth Education Manager, coordinates the visits and works to ensure that each visit is both educational and fun. She is familiar with students and Sac City Unified. She is a former teacher who led a model school garden program for 10 years. “I love to see dirty hands, team work and exploration in both school gardens and on the farm,” Hardwicke said. Her work at Soil Born is designed to create a full cycle of connection by working with schools in their campus gardens and coordinating the activities and lessons for the student visits. “Our work goes beyond just the field trips here.”