FVS Collaborates With Mountain Song Community School for Earth Day
For Earth Day 2016, the community focused on the interconnected nature of the food system and the environment.
As part of Fountain Valley School of Colorado's annual observance of Earth Day, 13 students joined the cooking and agricultural arts classes at Mountain Song Community School on April 20 to focus on food sustainability.
Earth Day is celebrated at FVS every year with service learning projects both on and off campus. This year, the community focused on the interconnected nature of the food system and the environment.
At Mountain Song, a Waldorf Methods charter school in Old Colorado City, FVS students split into two groups. The first group worked with second-graders in Mountain Song’s sustainable garden. Free-range chickens roamed about while students had a hands-on lesson about composting and then helped plant broccoli, which was started from seed in Mountain Song’s greenhouse. The second group joined Jennie Furman P '17's cooking arts class to assist the young students in making a recipe for rice balls.
Furman told the FVS students that the class is about inspiring children through food; it’s also a cultural experience.
“We don’t preach about food,” said Furman, whose daughter, Annika, is a junior at FVS. “Here they can learn about different kinds of food and get recipes from all over the world to try at home. It’s great to see how curious kids get when they are making their own food.”
FVS students including Frank Olivieri-Barton ’17 helped the second-graders with some of the more difficult cooking skills for smaller hands, such as using a grater or peeler. Barton appreciated the fact that the Mountain Song students had responsibility for both caring for their garden and cooking.
“Working with the students was fun because we were able to help them, but they were really the ones who taught us about cooking,” he said. “What they are doing at their school is important because it allows students to try fresh and diverse foods which I wouldn’t have tried at their age. The Mountain Song farm to table program also allowed us to learn more about food sustainability overall.”
Besides working at Mountain Song, FVS students also volunteered with Pikes Peak Urban Gardens at Harlan Wolfe Ranch, learned about combining aquaculture and hydroponics at Daily Harvest Aquaponics in Colorado Springs, cooked vegetarian and vegan recipes at Adam’s Mountain Cafe, and visited Redstone Castle Kinders in Manitou Springs, where Dan and Gail Stuart P '09 produce much of their own food, and raise goats and chicken.