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Veggie U Brings “Earth to Table” Curriculum to Kids

Veggie U Brings “Earth to Table” Curriculum to Kids

By Lacy Hansen for Diets In Review | Image via Billy Delfs

It’s not news that our nation’s youth is in a serious health crisis. The latest statistics say that 17 percent or 12.5 million children between the ages of 2 and 19 are obese; not overweight, but obese.

In addition, our children are dealing with diseases at an alarming rate. Whether it’s weight-related ailments like type 2 diabetes or simply a lack of essential vitamins from poor diets, our kids are in a bleak state.

Thankfully, more and more people are noticing this trend and attempting to do something about it instead of just discussing ways to fix the problem. We’re all familiar with first lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign. Mrs. Obama and her team have worked diligently to get children moving and eating healthy. However, the task is so daunting that it’s going to take more than one initiative to turn things around. Thankfully, other programs are making great strides in this arena as well.

Veggie U is a truly unique and powerful program for children. This science-based curriculum for fourth graders was created by doctors, farmers, chefs, and teachers in Ohio who were motivated by the health dilemmas facing today’s youth. In response, the group desired to create a program that allowed children to learn more about the food they eat and how it impacts their health. Furthermore, they wanted to not only show kids more about healthy food options, but also teach them about the importance of sustainable agriculture. These ideas eventually gave birth to Veggie U’s “Earth to Table” curriculum.

“Earth to Table” allows students to connect with the food they consume by allowing them to grow their own food. Students in the program are given a complete grow kit that allows the children to learn the entire food process from seed to harvest. The children even have root view boxes, worm farms, and grow lights for the hands-on study.

When the session has ended each child gets to eat their results. The program designers believe this will allow children to make better and more informed food choices for themselves, along with learning the art of farming.

Veggie U has been in operation since 2003. They are striving to get funding and support in order to meet their goal of having the “Earth to Table” program in all 93,000 fourth grade classrooms in the country. The founders believe that this program could help decrease childhood disease and increase children’s awareness of healthy food options. Furthermore, it’s believed that healthy children also learn better.

These types of programs are essential if our kids are going to get out of the hole we’ve helped dig. Healthy food, healthy farming, and healthy choices are all at the core of Veggie U. Teachers and parents can get more information about the curriculum at the VeggieU website. Let’s help Veggie U get into all fourth grade classrooms for the sake of today’s and future generations’ health.

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Read more: Children, Eco-friendly tips, Environment, Food, Health, Healthy Schools, Lawns & Gardens, Nature & Wildlife, , , ,

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22 comments

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9:53AM PDT on Sep 23, 2012

This is great as least then they have that much more knowledge about healthy eating.

1:54PM PDT on Sep 10, 2012

This is a great initiative for the children, so basically for our future. It's a huge challenge to counteract the massive marketing machine that promotes putting junk into our bodies for the sake of a few seconds of "this tastes good".

For those interested, there's a program called Jump with Jill that promotes healthy nutrition education for children through a live show, a CD and creating media to promote healthy habits.
This is a link to their website:

http://www.jumpwithjill.com/

1:08PM PDT on Sep 6, 2012

Great site for my granddaughter to learn about the vegetables we planted, cared for and are now harvesting! Thankyou

12:50PM PDT on Sep 3, 2012

hvala

9:35AM PDT on Sep 2, 2012

thanks

2:50PM PDT on Sep 1, 2012

thank you

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hm5zgSpdkB4

12:37AM PDT on Sep 1, 2012

excellent idea. I've looked at the situation in the US, and it seems to me that what's really sad about food education at the moment is that people who want to eat healthy just have no idea how to do it. They're getting all their food and nutrition info from people peddling fad diets! Carbs are seen as the enemy, but over here all foods which are Low GI and therefore healthy are marketed as such, because we've been taught that indeed, carbs and starches from vegetables ARE healthy, but refined carbs are nothing but sugar. In the US it seems there are even DOCTORS who don't know the difference. And why? Their nutritional info in their training is so limited, and they are people themselves. When people don't know the importance of eating fiber and whole foods which are big and bulky and start thinking compact, compressed food processed into bars are healthy, then it's no wonder. These people (as in the majority of the population) just don't stand a chance. It's really important to teach kids proper eating. At least if you eat junk food then you KNOW it's junk food, but when you're eating junk food believing it's healthy, that's just tragic. The more people who appreciate real food and can see that animal products are not the be-all and end-all in a diet and the better.

3:01PM PDT on Aug 31, 2012

Thank you for sharing.

1:49PM PDT on Aug 31, 2012

Wonderful idea. Thanks for the info.

12:59PM PDT on Aug 31, 2012

thanks

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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