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Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden

A food philosophy that makes sense
 
Stephanie Alexander has a vision that pleasurable food education is accessible to every Australian school with a primary curriculum.
The not-for-profit Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation takes a revolutionary approach to food education focusing on pleasure, flavour and fun via the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program. The recipe for effective food education:
  • Encourage fun, flavour and texture through experiences that engage all the senses.
  • Model good food choices without resorting to pyramids or labels of ‘healthy’ or ‘unhealthy’.
  • Reinforce techniques repeatedly, providing the confidence to plant seeds or cook simple dishes at home.
  • Plan menus around the fresh, seasonal produce growing in the garden.
  • Use ingredients at their peak – seasonal herbs, crisp veggies, fresh fruits.
  • Expand culinary horizons, presenting cultural differences as fascinating rather than strange.
  • Expand vocabularies for describing foods, flavours, textures, plants and processes.
  • Food should be delicious and the cooking of fresh fruit and vegetables should be timed with great care.
  • Come together at the end of the cooking to share our meal around the table.

 

 

 

At Bohlevale State School students in years 3, 4 and 5 will spend sixty minutes each fortnight in an extensive vegetable garden that they have helped design, build and maintain on the school grounds. They will learn about plants seed saving, water management, compost and soil health. They will also learn about the seasons, plant varieties, ripeness and the connection between care in the garden and flavour on the plate.
 
Students will also spend ninety minutes each alternating fortnight in a purpose-built kitchen preparing a variety of meals created from the produce they have helped grow and harvest. They then share these meals in the large open plan dining area.
 
All activities are fully supervised by the classroom teacher and an experienced chef, follow strict hygiene and safety guidelines and have been approved by the Principal. Activities are also aligned with the Australian Curriculum Learning Areas and have literacy, numeracy, scientific and/or health related components.