Wednesday, January 14, 2009

feeding birds, feeding students

I walk into the student kitchen classroom, pickup a microwave and walk towards the door. A remark about me being a thief is made but I keep moving telling them to keep quiet. You see there is surplus of microwaves and there are birds to be fed.

We have spent a chunk of the last two days mixing peanut butter with cornmeal and bird seed; and it sure goes easier when the peanut butter is warm.

So I say, "I'll be back in a moment," to The Mighty Assistant and return with a microwave.

Now there is bird feed in a few spots about campus and I will report on what we see along the way.

Later in the day I chatted with a co-worker who helps to feed our students lunch. Our conversation turned to her desire to use our produce in the lunches. I've had this thought, but always thought we don't have enough. Then the middle path flows into my brain... just because you don't grow enough to be the main supplier does that mean you can't supply anything... and we talk some more. Next summer maybe one week the peppers can be donated and herbs can be quite bountiful, and now I think about onions and garlic. This is good. This is moving onward. Students in my classes have tasted our veggies and herbs, but this would give that opportunity to all.

Later in the day an occupational therapist tells me about a possible project, again I fight off reasons to say no and see possibilities. I will report on this project after I talk to the contact I was given.

No brownies this week, however, we made plenty of bread with our dried rosemary. At home I had some toasted on the side of an egg scramble which included potatoes and onions.


Aunt Debbi/kurts mom said...

Lucky students

tina said...

A logical conclusion and it might make the produce more appealing knowing it is homegrown.

walk2write said...

Feeding the soul is more like it. Where were you and your garden when I or even my kids were in school? Your students will feel an even greater sense of accomplishment when they realize the rest of the student body is reaping the benefits of their labor of learning. Thief? Good Samaritan sounds better.

Wayne Stratz said...

Aunt Debbi-- most of the time

Tina--- I will do my best to get something into the lunch room. easier to do in the summer when we have a few less students.

walk2write--- The students love to go out and sell our veggies and baked goods for that very reason. They are met with much enthusiasm a long the way... and also learn how to take "not today," as an answer to their sales attempts.

susan (garden-chick) said...

Contributing produce to the school kitchen is a wonderful idea. All that lavender and rosemary you are eating must be boosting your cognitive skills!

Wayne Stratz said...

Susan-- thanks for the visit. there are some parts of the brain that seem to be doing better. Maybe I can do an infomercial for lavender brownies.

Penny said...

I'm always amazed when I read your blog at the many life lesson's you're able to teach through your garden. My gardening with my children in their younger years seemed to only turn them off, when they were young teens, to anything having to do with it. Now they're in college and, guess what? Both son and daughter have herbs and veggies. (It may have something to do with a desire to eat!)

Wayne Stratz said...

Penny--- food is a great motivator, and while we do make things like brownies from time to time, much of what we do is on the savory side of the spectrum. I have students who will get a sweet pepper and have it devoured before they leave the classroom. It is very cool that your children have started gardening. Your comment has a few future posts floating about in my head.

Penny said...

Late response -- sorry. I'm sure "better late than never" doesn't fly when you hear it from your students!
I thoroughly enjoy your blog and the interesting ways you're teaching kids valuable life lessons right out of the garden. I did a story (I work for a newspaper) recently about our local university and its community garden for students. The kids were mostly first-time gardeners experimenting with plants, and I was floored by their excitement.
I wonder if you have been at Pathway long enough to check back with any graduates? It would be really interesting to see what they're doing with what you've taught.

Wayne Stratz said...

I have heard from some, I will post about this at some point. Thanks for visiting.