Orca French Fries: A Delicious Tradition

DSC_0706

It’s an amazing yearly tradition around here to dig potatoes out of the ground and turn them into the freshest french fries you have ever eaten.

DSC_0635

The kids get shovels and commence with digging up purple, yellow, white, red, and fingerling potatoes. W3e bring them in, fry them up, and the kids go absolutely crazy for this fresh, organic, local, and free (F.O.L.F as we call it) version of their favorite snack.

DSC_0723

Older students get the chance to use math to come up with a fraction number that shows the amount of ingredients they “know” in your local Mcfries. This is a chance to delve deeper into the critical thinking it should take to be a modern eater. Yes McD’s is an easy target but also a recognizable one that most kids can relate to.

DSC_0702

And students can even take a look at the Mcfries I bought 4 years ago and have kept in a jar. Even though I have opened them periodically, they still haven’t decomposed. This simple visual tells you a lot- or at least makes folks think! Should we eat food this processed w/ 17 ingredients VS our 3 ingredients?

DSC_0742

Delicious and fun!

DSC_0643

 

Advertisements

Leave a comment »

Room 101 & 102 revelations

DSC_0539

It is pretty amazing to work w/ our medically fragile students in Room 101 & 102. Orca really prides itself on inclusion for all students. These two classrooms commonly interact and join with other regular education classes. These classes also come out once a week on their own and we have great small group sessions focusing on experiential learning and interacting w/ plants & the natural world.

DSC_0541

We had them touching, smelling, and interacting w/ such cool plants as curry sage, mint, and lamb’s ear. It is really great that they have a space to come outside and enjoy themselves- or immerse themselves I should say, in a sensory rich environment. They seemed to enjoy it and become enthralled w/ each plant on this  amazingly sunny day.

DSC_0543

Leave a comment »

Pre-K & Kindergarten fun!

DSC_0575

DSC_0573

It’s always a fun experience to see a kindergarten or pre-k student dig a  carrot out of the ground for the first time (or for the 50th time!). Kids will never wonder where a carrot came from. To take a crunchy & delicious bite is to take a journey into garden flavors and yummy goodies.

DSC_0586

We also harvested grapes, cherry tomatoes, fennel, mint, and more.

DSC_0533

Kindergarteners harvested calendula flowers for a calendula medicinal balm we will make here at school. They all also got a sunflower if they wanted!

DSC_0596

Leave a comment »

5th,6th,7th, & 8th grade salsa!

DSC_0442

Our Orca tomatoes are a big source of pride around here. They are grown from seed by students and the plants produce some of the most delicious tomatoes you have ever had. Multicolored salsa was made this last week: cherry, heirloom, & slicer tomatoes galore.

DSC_0619

It’s a very fresh and delicious snack to make from scratch. We got some new “kid friendly” cutting knives and a plethora of new bamboo cutting boards to make this project more seamless.

DSC_0506

It was a hit all around. It really is amazing to see new Orca students who have not had years of my “fresh, free, local, organic” propaganda. These new students really get their minds and taste buds blown wide open when they pick food w/ their classmates and prepare it in the greenhouse. They start as skeptics many times and end up as full blown chef participants. It’s great to start off the year by “breaking bread” together and having some delicious hands-on fun.

Leave a comment »

Hot Hot Hot SUMMERTIME!

It has been the hottest of hottest dry summers ever! Somehow through a lot of Orca family help watering and some extra time spent at the garden by yours truly, we have stayed alive and green (and just a tad crispy). We should have plenty to harvest in September when school starts again. Lots of kale, tomatoes, fennel, figs, apples, kohlrabi, chard, potatoes, so many herbs, and tons of flowers. Stay tuned for the best year ever of gardening, nutrition, sustainability, social justice, & deliciousness!

Leave a comment »

Orca Garden Sodas: End o’ year epic epicness!

What an amazing year of fun, food, environmentalism, joy, & wonder!!!

collage-2017-06-23

We made incredibly delicious garden themed sodas w/ our trusty Sodastream, a collection of awesome garden ingredients, and a few lemons & limes.

DSC_0933

It has been an amazing year- the activities, culture, and uniqueness of Orca make it truly a special place for learning.

DSC_0943

This last week was sunny, fun, and full o’ bubbly beverages that the kids enjoyed a lot. There might have been a lil’ hose spraying too to stay cool.

DSC_0987

It was also a lil’ sad too because of all the great Orca students I have known forever moving on to different middle schools after 5th grade. All those kids got awesome tote bags & I sincerely hope they remember the Orca garden and their experience here! This was the first year too where I had known some kids from K-8th grade: the entire run. Bon voyage amazing kids! You will be missed!

dsc_0937.jpg

Most kids got cool Orca Garden & Kale Revolution prints if (if they didn’t get a tote) that we printed up on a screen press. They signed them and I hope they throw them up on a wall somewhere and enjoy them!

DSC_0970

DSC_0963

DSC_0984

Peace out y’all- it’s been a great year! Anthony (I) will be back for my 10th year (!!?!?!) next school year and we are already planning incredible units, themes, activities, and delicious foods to harvest. Stay cool & stay fresh!

DSC_0991

Leave a comment »

Calendula & Lavender Balm!

DSC_0896

We spent the week melting down beeswax & olive oil and combining the magical medicinal flower calendula w/ some lavender. Kids love carrying this pocket size balm around and being prepared for all the shenanigans that they get into.

DSC_0894

This balm can help heal scratches, bug bites, itches, chapped lips, and more! Calendula grows like a weed in our garden but it is a great smelling flower and pollinator also! The lavender was from both our garden and the neighborhood. We have collected it all on some nice walks around Orca this Spring.

DSC_0881

We got some time to dance a little too, celebrating the end of a fabulous year here at Orca!

Leave a comment »