Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Volunteers Wanted!

Spring is here again, and Urban Sprouts needs your help! We are looking for volunteers to help out in the school garden during class time.

We're also looking for Advisory Board members to help guide and lead our organization as we grow and develop.

School Garden Assistants are needed to:

  • Work with young people during the school day and after school working as they weed, dig beds, plant seeds, water and mulch the school garden.
  • Assist with conducting our evaluation research study.
  • Help plan and staff Salad Days - students serve a school-grown salad bar to the entire student body.
  • Help plan and staff Garden Parties - students host a community celebration that includes garden work, harvesting, cooking, group games and arts activities attended by students, families, teachers and community members.
  • Organize, plan and help build tool sheds, worm boxes and toolboxes.
  • Maintain the garden during the summer and school vacations.
For more information on both positions, click on the "Volunteer Match" icon to the right, or contact us if you'd like details about school locations and schedules. Hope to see you in the garden!

Monday, February 12, 2007

JJSE Portfolio Panels

At June Jordan (JJSE), in order to graduate students must demonstrate Portfolio work, or a series of in-depth papers covering each high school subject area. Students have to present and defend these "Masterpiece" papers to a panel of teachers. This is intense! Teachers ask some serious questions.

I went to watch two students from the Food class presenting and defending papers they wrote for our class. Above, Jimmy is speaking about the ethical issues of industrial feedlots (sick cattle) compared to small-scale cattle farms (happy cows!). Below, Wenwan is wondering why Americans are so absloultely gluttonous about eating fast food, when she doesn't see this (yet?!) in her native China.

I was very inspired to see students demonstrating their knowledge in such an in-depth, creative, and useful way, rather than through standardized tests like the horrible California High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE) everyone had to take earlier this week. Not fun, or useful. If only more schools were like JJSE!