A not-for-profit organization dedicated to educating children, teachers, and families about the benefits of nutritious, healthy eating and the important traditions of supporting local farmers helps partners, teams, and sponsors bring something to the table.
Spoons Across America Ã¢Â?Â¢ provides a network for sharing information and resources among culinary professionals, educators, and parents/guardians.
“My favorite activity was cooking because we actually cooked and chopped things,” said Gene, a fifth grader who attends P.S. #111.
The program is run in schools, through health care organizations, community-based organizations, and the workplace.
It supports activities through curriculum development, technical assistance, and capacity building.
Spoons is a 501 Ã?Â© (3) agency founded on the premise that it is essential to the health of our children and society to bring the joys of the table to the children of America.
Most families don’t eat at the table as a family any more, according to statistics and it’s been this way for about 20 years.
All of the program recipes use a variety of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains which are beneficial to long-term health and well-being.
A 1995 Cornell University study showed that children who have had hands-on experience to explore and prepare new and nutritious foods will be more likely to eat in a healthy way.
Whenever possible Spoons Across America Ã¢Â?Â¢ curricula involve in-class and homework assignments that initiate family meals, encourage participation, and enrich the family eating experience.
Studies show that the interactions that family meals foster benefit children developmentally and psychologically and increasing learning readiness.
Spoons creates quality, hands-on education programs that fulfill New York state educational standards and incorporate valuable life lessons.
Experiential education engages all the senses to reach the whole child.
Over the past eight years Spoons Across America Ã¢Â?Â¢ educational programs have served well over 10,000 public school children in more than 20 cities.
In 2001 the founders of the Days of Taste created Spoons Across America Ã¢Â?Â¢.
The late culinary legend Julia Child was an enthusiastic supporter of Spoons from the beginning.
Spoons Across America Ã¢Â?Â¢ partners with businesses, professional organizations, and volunteers – farmers, chefs, restaurateurs, and food professionals – across the country to coordinate and sponsor these and other programs for elementary and middle schools including:
The Dinner Party Project Ã¢Â?Â¢, which is a dynamic, family-focused food education program involving fifth, sixth, and seventh graders in the entire process of producing a dinner party for their parents at a school or community center in the spring.
“The Dinner Party was the biggest turnout for families all year,” said teacher Miranda Millage.
“My daughter was so proud to be the hostess and the effect was definitely felt at home,” said parent Suzanne Savoy.
The dinner party changed one student, Alexis’ opinion about trying new food.
“I really don’t like to try new things but I did and it was great!” she said.
AIWF Days of Taste New York is a discovery-based curriculum designed specifically for fourth and fifth grade students that is conducted each fall.
“This is my third year being involved in Days of Taste and I am still like a wide-eyed child every time a chef enters my room,” said teacher Sheila Wright of New York City.
On The Farm is a day-long exploration of a working for third through fifth grade children, led by a farmer and an educational specialist.
For more information, call 800-274-2493 or visit aiwf.org.