Blog Posts

The Power of Food through a 3 day Summer Institute

July 3-5th 2018

 

A diverse group of teachers, dietitians, professors, chefs, and farmers attended a 3 day summer institute at UBC, with a revolving theme around the power of food.

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Every morning started off with coffee and treats from Terra Breads and Grounds for Coffee followed by introductory activities on the first day and sessions on the other two days. Dr. Candice Rideout from the faculty of Land and Food Systems at UBC gave an eyeopening presentation on the second day and left us with the discussion on who decides what, where, when and what do children eat. On the third day Dr. Sinikka Elliott from the faculty of Sociology at UBC presented her ideas on Race, Class and Gender in bringing good food to others. She started her presentation with an anecdote from the past to demonstrate the idea of who decides what good food is.

On the first day the morning workshop was held at Roots on the Roof, in the UBC Nest.

Participants were lead through the growing story tellers by Dr. Will Valley and the RotR team. Various vegetables, herbs and greens were harvested during this workshop and used in salads for lunch on that day. The activity on the second day was hosted by Dr. Eduardo Jovel, and participants walked around campus engaging with Indigenous Foods-capes. On the last day all participants practiced their chopping skills in the kitchen with the Growing Chefs! team, where they learned how to teach students easy cooking skills and made a variety of salads and dressings for lunch that day.

After enjoying lunches prepared by the interns/volunteers and participants with the Growing Chefs! team and Miranda Higuchi, there were afternoon workshops with different focuses around the idea of food systems. On the first day there were three workshops that participants could choose from. Duffy Roberts from UBC’s Department of English Language and Literature held a writing workshop, Eat. Write. Here. Exploring Food Systems through Creative Writing. A collaborative discussion of how to use food experiences to shape core writing skills in the language arts curriculum.

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Lesley Dampier, Maja Krzic, and Wei Yan Yeong from the Faculty of Land and Food Systems facilitated the Soils Exposed workshop. Soil is the foundation of all life! The facilitators lead the participants through hands on activities to explore important soil concepts like soil texture, soil development and soil erosion where they got their hands dirty!

 

 

 

 

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Miranda Higuchi, Chef and Teacher Candidate in UBC’s Faculty of Education facilitated and activity of the Senses: Understanding Taste (and Making Pizzas!).

On the second day there were two workshops that participants could choose from. The Fresh Roots team held a workshop that focused on Engaging and Empowering Youth. The other workshop was with Stacy Friedman and the team from Intergenerational Landed Learning: Garden-based inquiry: Exploring nature through experiential, sensory learning.

 

 

As a closing activity on the third day, Dr. Lisa Powell facilitated a panel of teachers in conversation about their experiences. Teachers from a variety of schools in the Vancouver area gave advice, ideas, tips and solutions to all the participants.

Every day of the institute ended with time dedicated to reflection and discussion about the days activities and learnings. The institute immersed participants in a range of  food related topics to understand how food systems are incorporated in classrooms and the community, with such importance.

Thank you to all facilitators and participants for an amazing 2018 Summer Institute.

 

Van Horne Elementary Garden

 

Van Horne has used their TEGS grant to expand their school garden. Students from grades 2 to 7 were involved in every aspect of the process, including building new garden boxes, planning the garden space, planting, watering, and harvesting. They are looking forward to harvesting their crops in the fall, and learning how to prepare new dishes with what they have grown.

 

General Gordon Elementary

General Gordon elementary school participated in the Project Chef program in fall 2017. The grades 4 and 5 students learned about the food preparation process, from where food comes from to kitchen skills and clean-up, as well as how to make healthy choices and enjoy food with others.

 

Selkirk Elementary Community Garden

Selkirk Elementary School created a community garden during this school year. Kale, Radish, Lettuce, Bok Choy, Basil and Peas were planted by six classrooms from K – 2nd grade. The vegetables planted will be harvested for the Farm to Table event Selkirk has planned in June where students will get the chance to taste the vegetables they have been growing through out the year. Each of these classrooms has also installed a vermicomposting bin where worms recycle food scraps and organic material.

 

 

Spring Interns:

Meet Natalia Ordoñez

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Program: Food, Nutrition and Health

Why do you study what you study (career goals, interests, passions, etc.)?
I have always loved food and being in the kitchen

Describe yourself in 5 words:
Ambitious, Adaptable, Organized, Positive,

What is your favourite colour and why?
Purple, it just has always been my favourite colour.

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go and why?
India, because of its diversity, culture and food.

What is your favorite fruit or vegetable?
Carrots because they can be cooked in so many ways and incorporated into so many dishes.

Do you have any plans post-graduation?
I would love to work with children and raising awareness about where our food comes from and its nutrition.

What does food mean to you?
An essential part of our lives, what fuels us and brings us together. Food it is everything!

How have you changed over the course of your studies?
I have always be passionate about the health component of food and its nutritional importance. But ever since I moved to Vancouver I have realized that there is so many people who lack this information and don’t see the importance of food to them and the whole community. It has made me realize that I want to create awareness and educate people to hopefully bring back the love of food to everyone.

What are your hobbies and interests?
Cooking especially baking, swimming, photography, being outdoors, travelling

What are you most passionate about?
Cooking and learning

What is your most memorable experience related to your studies?
As part of a class project, teaching kindergarten students how to grow plants in eggshells.

Meet Misa Gillis

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Program: Global Resource Systems

Why do you study what you study (career goals, interests, passions, etc.)?
I’ve always had an interest in the community and nutritional aspects of health, and I would love to be able to apply a community based mindset to a future career in medicine.

Describe yourself in 5 words:
Ambitious, Personable, Honest, Curious, Energetic

What is your favourite colour and why?
Red, because it’s bright and the colour of a really nice sunrise.

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go and why?
I would love to travel all through South America to experience the culture, nature, and improve my Spanish!


What is your favorite fruit or vegetable?
Japanese sweet potatoes, topped with peanut butter (trust me it’s delicious)

Do you have any plans post-graduation?
Med school! (Fingers crossed)

What does food mean to you?
For me, food is the basis of a healthy life, and a way to enjoy your surroundings and connect with others.

How have you changed over the course of your studies?
I’ve completely changed the course of my undergraduate degree in the past year. After starting out planning to study the health sciences, I’ve realized that there is so much more to health than pure biochemistry and physiology. I’m trying to really focus on my interests, and enjoy the journey of university.

What are your hobbies and interests?
I love being outdoors hiking, climbing, skiing. Cooking and reading are also a must when I can find the time!

What are you most passionate about?
Health and happiness (for myself and others)

What is your most memorable experience related to your studies?
Presenting a research project at a beautiful lodge at Loon Lake with 70 of my classmates.

 

Meet Maryam Sadeghi

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Program: Nutritional Sciences

Why do you study what you study (career goals, interests, passions, etc.)?
I am really interested in child obesity and it’s associated diseases and risks, and my future goal is to improve our food system so that our children wouldn’t be the victims of our mistakes.

Describe yourself in 5 words:
A good communicator and includer

What is your favourite colour and why? Light blue, it’s the colour of sky and sea, the two things that are relaxing and peaceful

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go and why?
Perú, because of Machu Picchu, Nazca Lines, and all the other wonders that it have. Also because I have a friend there.

What is your favorite fruit or vegetable?
Orange and Broccoli

Do you have any plans post-graduation?
I want to study education after I graduate with my science degree and become a teacher

What does food mean to you?
Essential for survival and it brings people together! Food is culture!

How have you changed over the course of your studies?
I became more aware of what is going on in our food system and more considerate toward the choices I make and how it affect me, my community and our food system. These changes are as small as controlling and limiting my food waste to engaging in different volunteer opportunities and experiences in order to make positive changes in our community.

What are your hobbies and interests?
Any exciting adventures that rushes adrenaline into your body 

What are you most passionate about?
My biggest passion is to help in creating a world without all these hardships and struggles, a world that different cultures, ethnicity, sex and race make it strong not weak! I know it’s hard to create that perfect world but I also know it could be better than what it already is, I know there is a lot of space left for improvement and I want to contribute to improving it.

What is your most memorable experience related to your studies?
There are a lot of hand on experience in this faculty to create lot of memorable experiences. What I enjoyed the most so far was the workshop we did in LFS 250. We went to a preK classroom to teach kids about food and salad but at the end of the day, we were the ones who learned so much from them.

 

Winter Interns:

Meet Jasmine Bal

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Program: Applied Biology (Bsc.) Food and the Environment Major

Why do you study what you study (career goals, interests, passions, etc.)?
I started out in food, nutrition, and health but I changed my academic path after working at an educational farm and realizing the impact on one’s relationship with food once connected to the process of growing it. I am passionate about sharing my love of food, its role in culture, health, community, and the environment with those around me! I hope to translate this love of sustainable food into my future career by working as an educator in food literacy.

What is your position at Think&EatGreen@School?
I am the social media intern for TEGS and also am the communication liaison for six TEGS granted schools.

Describe yourself in 5 words:
Inspired, curious, positive, empathetic, and enthusiastic.

What is your favourite colour and why?
My favourite colour has always been green. Its relevance in my life is always changing but now it reminds me of the forests surrounding my home which gives me a sense of peace.

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go and why?
I would go to Kona to hike, bike wwoof and learn to surf. I am actually going to Kona in April to do all these things, needless to say I am over the moon excited!

What is your favorite fruit or vegetable?
Blueberries because my grandparents have a few acres of blueberry bushes that I grew up foraging in with my cousins and sisters. We would compete to see who could pick the most but I was always sabotaging my efforts by eating half of my rations!

Do you have any plans post-graduation?
I would like to continue my studies in education but I am also very keen on travelling and getting more experience working on farms. I plan on wwoofing and biking around Europe for the summer after I graduate.

What does food mean to you?
Food means energy and it is essential for all but further, food brings people together, and it is a social tool that our society has been built upon.

How have you changed over the course of your studies?
I have always been passionate about food and nutrition in the way it effected the body but through my studies my passions have evolved to how it effects the community and how to make a more food literate world. I have become much more self-aware and my studies have guided me to follow my own interests despite external pressures or expectations.

What are your hobbies and interests?
I am very involved with UBC Triathlon and I love biking as it allows you to see expansive land the views are very rewarding. I love to see new things – whether that be a local hike I have never done or travelling to a new place! I am a total foodie and enjoy trying new eateries and types of foods.

What are you most passionate about?
I am most passionate about finding ways to evolve food literacy education so the consumers and growers of tomorrow will work towards a more sustainable food industry and with more awareness of how food effects our health, environment, and quality of life.

What is your most memorable experience related to your studies?
My most memorable experience was when I did a workshop on eggshell seeding in a grade five classroom. The excitement students had in the process of growing and in learning of soil types affirmed my aspiration to impact food literacy education

Meet Carla Hick

Carla Hick 2

Program: Applied Biology, Food & Environment Major

Why do you study what you study (career goals, interests, passions, etc.)?
I love food and nature

What is your position at Think&EatGreen@School?
TEGS Liason for schools in my neighbourhood. I support the schools in achieving their food literacy goals. Part of the position is gathering resources for the teachers and providing workshops to the students of the schools!

Describe yourself in 5 words:
Eccentric gastronomer, farmer and traveller

What is your favourite colour and why?
Orange because it’s bright, warm and happy!

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go and why?
Fiji for the vibrant blue green waters

What is your favorite fruit or vegetable?
Any cucurbit (squash and cucumbers) they are delicious, versatile, productive and I think the plant structure is neat, they provide ground cover or you can train them up and over structures.

Do you have any plans post-graduation?
Work for farmfolk cityfolk and move to the Okanagan

What does food mean to you?
Everything! Nutrients, life cycling, comfort, entertainment, artistic expression and a powerful force

How have you changed over the course of your studies?
I think more critically about information presented to me and I have more of systems and interdisciplinary approach to problems

What are your hobbies and interests?
Skiing, cooking, crafting, camping, hiking, yoga and of course food!

What are you most passionate about?
Food, relaxing and my husband.

What is your most memorable experience related to your studies?
Halloween, first year biology class when an ape and Charles Darwin stormed the classroom! HA! Biology and evolution is awesome.

Meet Emma Burger

emma

Program: BSc. Food. Nutrition, and Health

 Why do you study what you study (career goals, interests, passions, etc.)?
The reason I chose to study food, nutrition, and health, is because I find the ability of food to nourish and heal the body fascinating … and, there is always something new to learn! During my studies, I have become increasingly aware and interested around the importance of food system sustainability, as well as increasing food literacy in the community. My career aspirations are to complete my post-baccalaureate degree in education, and teach students these important concepts, while decreasing societies disconnect between farm and plate


What is your position at Think&EatGreen@School?
My position involves planning and assisting with TEGS events, as well as communication with schools involved with TEGS projects.

Describe yourself in 5 words:
Harmonious – Optimistic – Adaptable – Adventurous – Organized

What is your favourite colour and why?
My favourite colour is forest green, as I associate it with life and energy. It reminds me of spring time and the abundance of new growth that comes with.

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go and why?
Any of the islands that will soon be under water OR road trip across Canada!

What is your favorite fruit or vegetable?
I love kale because it is packed with vitamins/minerals and very weather tolerant!

Do you have any plans post-graduation?
Travel and work are in my plans post-graduation. I have had to put my travels on the back-burner during my studies, so I am very excited to continue my adventures. The locations are undecided, but I hope to WWOOF somewhere along the road. As for work, my aim is to get involved with an organization with similar visions as Think&EatGreen@School.

 

 

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