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Lettuce Learn | Spring 2016 Garden News
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Lettuce Learn Garden Updates:

Our Lettuce Learn gardens have been busy this spring getting ready for the upcoming growing season. 

Parkway Elementary:
Students at Parkway Elementary participated in the first of several taste tests in early May as part of the TASTE (Teaching All Students to Experience) Local Food Project thanks to funding from High Country Local First. Students sampled beets that were roasted with onions and garlic and served with tortilla chips. The beets were provided by Springhouse Farms, a certified organic farm in Watauga County. The taste test was a wonderful way to introduce students to new locally grown foods, and local food producers. Reflections about the taste test from Garden Coordinator Shannon Carroll can be found here

Parkway has been hard at work and have completed their Pollinator Garden! Parkway Elementary school garden will also be one of the gardens featured in the High Country Farm Tour on July 16th. Be sure to stop by and say hi!
BEETS at Springhouse Farm
Parkway Elementary would like to thank Boone Service League for their generous grant. This will allow children at Parkway to learn from vertical growing spaces attached to their playground fences, from signage about important environmental processes, and the sustainable use of water through rain-barrels and automated watering techniques, just to name a few.

Parkway would also like to thank their amazing and dedicated PTO who allow the school to continue operating successfully each year. 
Two Rivers Community School:
Two Rivers has been busy this spring. They just finished up a "Garden in a Tray" fundraiser, where they earned over $650. They want to thank everyone that pre-ordered a garden in a tray! Two Rivers was also the recipient of the Farm Bureau's "Ag in the Classroom" grant that allowed them to enhance their teaching of season extension techniques. Students learned about starting seeds indoors, and the construction of cold frames and low tunnels. Two Rivers has been hard at work designing their pollinator garden and are expecting to get it planted soon. Two Rivers will also be one of the garden stops on the Farm Tour on July 16th. Make sure you stop by for a tour! 

Two Rivers is also looking for volunteers to help in the community garden during the June, July, and early August summer months. If you think you'll have anywhere from a day, to a week of free time this summer, and would like to volunteer to weed, water, or harvest veggies, click the button below. 
Volunteer Sign-up Sheet
Valle Crucis Elementary:
Valle Crucis has been busy this spring planting a variety of plants. They have strawberries, broccoli, and kale planted in their secret garden. Earlier this week they worked with some of the children to get some potatoes planted. More bulbs and seeds are being planted this week and next week. They also worked this week with some wonderful garden volunteers and some lucky second graders to get their pollinator garden planted. 
Mountain Pathways Montessori School:
Mountain Pathways has been busy this spring. They have their large garden planted and have inoculated almost all of their mushroom logs! Mountain Pathways also plans to participate in the next Kids Corner at the Watauga Country Farmers Market on May 28th. 

Mountain Pathways offers several summer sessions at Farm Camp. Farm Camp is a weeklong summer camp held five times throughout the summer. Students will learn the fundamentals of a sustainable food system and will learn to be active community members by growing surplus food for Hospitality House, and F.A.R.M. Cafe. The first week of Farm Camp will take place June 6-10 and will have speaker Neil Blake joining the students to teach them about fermentation. Students will also take a trip to Springhouse Farm to volunteer, as well as take part in Story Time in the Garden for children ages 0-3. On the final day of camp students will take a trip to Appalachian Mountain Brewery to sample pizzas made from ingredients grown in their garden. More information about the other weeks of Farm Camp and how to sign up your child for camp can be found here
Cove Creek Elementary: 
Cove Creek, is proud to announce that they are getting a school garden! While the school already had a greenhouse, established horticulture class, and several raised flower beds, the school-wide initiative for hands-on learning is expanding. Teachers at Cove Creek will have the option of adopting small garden plots for their classrooms. Cove Creek also recently established EcoRaiders Environmental Science Club in partnership with Mrs. Norris. They will be working to recruit families in helping build the raised beds and the composting station. Mrs. Norris' 6th grade class also recently got the opportunity to participate in App State's "EcoSensors for Mountain Classrooms" program and used a Vernier LabQuest 2 digital probe system to test soil quality at different areas around the school to verify that the soil was high enough quality for the upcoming garden!
Appalachian State University Child Development Center: 
This year the Child Development Center held a huge Earth Day celebration on April 23rd. The children made recyclable passports to ensure that everyone got to enjoy the activities. Kids got to hold baby chicks, made recycled CD reflectors for their gardens, made toilet paper roll bird feeders, and decorated egg carton caterpillars. The kids learned about starting mushroom logs, and even got to assist in drilling holes in the log with supervision. Another station offered the children the opportunity to learn about the cleaning of our waterways having found many deflated balls coming from their playground. Students were also given the opportunity to harvest kale earlier in the month and were taught many of the nutritional benefits. 
In July, the wonderful Susan Owens, owner of Lily Patch Farm will give us the fourth workshop in our Professional Development Series. The event is titled Harvesting Your School Garden and the date is to be determined. Check back to our website for updates for the event. 

Lettuce Learn Announcements:
 
Check out our Lettuce Learn Library!
The Lettuce Learn team has a wonderful opportunity for your children. We run a Lettuce Learn Library located at App State's Reich College of Education building. The library has over 50 books that are available for families to check out Monday-Friday 8am-5pm. Click the button below for the address to our library location, or a complete list of the books offered in our library. 
Lettuce Learn Library



Pollinator Gardens!
Thanks to the Captain Planet Grant, Lettuce Learn was able to assist in the installation of six pollinator gardens, five of which were schools (Parkway Elementary, Valle Crucis Elementary, Bethel Elementary, Two Rivers Community School, and Mabel Elementary) plus the ASU Child Development Center. Due to the generosity of the Captain Planet Foundation and our partner organizations there are now over 800 square feet of food and habitat for beneficial pollinators, where before there was barren grass lawn. Students at these elementary school will in turn benefit from the hands-on learning about pollinators, plant types and uses, and the workings of an ecosystem. 
 


Help School Gardens Take Root!
Lettuce Learn has many wonderful opportunities for families and local businesses to help the Lettuce Learn Gardens. 

Adopt a School Garden: 
  1. Plant a School Garden:
    • Butterfly Pollinator Garden: Help us install a beneficial butterfly pollinator garden at one of our schools. Your name, company name, or company logo will be included in our sponsorship page!
    • High Country Grown Future Entrepreneurs: Join in our partnership with High Country Local First, Hunger and Health Coalition, and Blue Ridge CRAFT to teach future generations about the economic viability of healthy, organic food. You will be recognized at the school garden of your choice! 
  2. Maintain a School Garden:
    • Help Support a Garden SMART Educator: Support a garden-based training for a teacher to teach Science, Math, Art, Reading/wRiting/Responsibility, and Teamwork in an outdoor garden setting. 
    • Provide a Garden Champion: Our dedicated garden champions are dedicated individuals that manage and care for the garden throughout the school year and over the summer. The Garden Champion donation allows for the Lettuce Learn team to provide a "LettuceLove" stipend to our garden champions to ensure that their dedication is partially compensated. 
Donate:
  • $25 provides hand-picked "thank you" flowers to a teacher
  • $50 provides seedlings for a fall garden
  • $100 provides a set of tools for a school garden
  • $250 allows a farmer to be brought to a school to pass on valuable agricultural wisdom to young children
  • $500 provides a Cooking Demonstration and a Cooking Cart (in partnership with Chef's Move to School)

Click the button below to be directed to our website to read more about our adoption levels or to make a donation to Lettuce Learn.
 
**All donations are tax deductible and are processed by Blue Ridge Women in Agriculture, a registered nonprofit. 
Lettuce Learn Investment Opportunities


Wild Edibles: Forage & Feast: Blue Ridge Woman in Agriculture will be hosting an event with Marc Williams on May 28th from 2-6:30pm. Participants will learn about foraging for wild edibles and will end the day by preparing a meal from what is foraged. To read more about the event and to RSVP, click here



Farm Camp at Mountain Pathways Montessori School: Farm Camp at Mountain Pathways is being offered five times throughout the summer; June 6-10, June 20-24, July 5-8, July 18-22, and August 1-5. More information for registering your child for Farm Camp or other summer sessions can be found
here

    
                      
Watauga County Garden & Farm Tour: This year, the Watauga County Garden Tour will be July 16th from 9am-12pm. This year, we have the pleasure of having the Mountain Pathways Montessori School, the ASU Child Development garden, Two Rivers Elementary, as well as the Parkway Elementary School gardens on the tour. The Watauga County Farm Tour will be July 16th from 2-6pm. We want to thank Blue Ridge Woman in Agriculture for putting together this event every year. To learn about more of the gardens and farms on the Watauga County Farm Tour, or about the Caldwell County Farm Tour (June 18th), or the Ashe County Farm Tour (August 13th), click here
     
 

And of course, we would love to thank our amazing supporting partners for their continued loyalty to our Lettuce Learn team.



       



    
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www.LettuceLearn.org

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Lettuce Learn | ASU Math & Science Education Center
PO Box 32091 | 151 College Street | Boone, NC 28608

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Lettuce Learn · PO Box 32091 · Math & Science Education Center · Boone, NC 28608 · USA

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