Field to Feast: Roots to Shoots, Week 1

This week begins Evergreen Summer Adventures Camp and the first Field to Feast session: Roots and Shoots- An exploration of how different plant parts are used for crafts, food and medicine. Day 1:  Today we oriented ourselves to  the kitchen and garden classroom spaces.

I can plant seeds and observe how they grow.

We planted bean seeds in our new raised bed and began a seed sprouting experiment.

We wonder...will the raised bed protect the baby bean seedlings from the hungry groundhog and bunnies?  This is our FOURTH planting of beans this season.  We are determined! We will watch and see.

Planting Beans1


Plant a seed, measure four fingers, plant a seed, measure four fingers...


Planting Beans2

This is our bean sprouting experiment.  We will closely observe how seeds sprout and record the what we discover in our journal, day by day.

Bean Seed Experiment1

Bean Seed Journal

I can harvest, prepare and eat food from the garden.

We harvested cucumbers, sliced them up and conducted a cucumber taste test.  How do you like your cucumbers best?

Peeled without salt?  Peeled with salt?

Unpeeled without salt? Unpeeled with salt?

Cucumber Taste Test

The students used describing words to share the differences in flavor; soft, juicy, chalky, crunchy, delicious, sweet, sour...

We wrapped things up by enjoying our cucumber snack and singing The Garden Song.

Garden Songs


Day 2: Today we had a guest teacher join us in the science lab for a plant anatomy lesson.

I can use the tools of science to learn more about plants and how they grow.

First, we listened.

Carlisle-xylem and phloem1

Next, we explored the concepts of xylem and phloem with our bodies.

rock, paper, phloem2

micah & cat

Then, we cut, shredded, and dissected to learn more about xylem and phloem in plants from our garden.

Dissection Micah

Tools of Science Ellie & Rowan

Tools of Science2

xylem & phloem

In the garden, we worked together to prepare beds, transplant starts, harvest and collect measurements for the building of two straw bale raised beds, which we will do later this week.

I can work together with my community to grow and harvest food.

Carrying the Goods

Preparing beds in the hoop house for tomatoes and peppers.

boys digging

Hoope House Teamwork

Exploring what's beneath the soil...are the potatoes ready for harvest yet?  Some are, and...

Finding Potatoes

Some aren't!  It's the tiniest potato EVER!

Smallest Potatoe Ever

Harvesting garlic.     Micah Garlic       Stevie Garlic

I can work together with others to design and build a raised garden bed out of straw bales.

Today was day 1 of this project.  We worked together to measure the space where we will build the beds.  We measured the size of a bale of straw and used math to determine how many total bales of straw we'll need for the project.  18!

Straw Bale Raised Bed Prep

Proud farmers!

Day 2 harvest

Day 3: We began today with a study of the six plant parts.  Then, we began our dye making project.

I can make natural dyes from plants.

Onion Peels & Coffee Grounds- to make tanish brown

Beet roots and stems- to make red/pink

Black Eye Susan stems and leaves- to make green

Students cut, peeled and trimmed to make our dye baths.  We'll add water and boil the materials to see what colors they produce.

peeling onions

With the leftover beet greens, we added some onions and garlic from the garden and cooked it up with some olive oil and sea salt for our Taste Test #2: Beet Greens Saute

cutting with goggles micah

Micah and Rowan thought it would be a good idea to chop onions wearing goggles so their eyes didn't get watery.  We learned that although it looks cool, it doesn't really work.  We still had some watery eyes around the cooking table.

cutting with goggles

Learning how to crush garlic cloves to make it easier to peel the skin off.

prep cooking

Here's our final product...greens on the plate

And, here's what they think...

Thumbs up Beet Greens

11 happy members of the Clean Plate Club.  Yummy!  and Delicious!

We spent the rest of class shoveling soil to mound our potatoes and peeling the outer layers of skin off of our newly harvested garlic.

Tomorrow is all day garden day:  straw bale raised beds, more potato mounding, garlic braiding and tomato sucker trimming.

Day 4: Today we worked hard and sweated a whole lot.

I can work together with others to design and build a raised garden bed out of straw bales.

Our big project was to build a raised bed out of straw bales.  First, we had to figure out how to move the straw bales from the truck to the garden.

We figured out that rolling them worked really well. flipping bales

Then, we put the bales in place and started filling the inside with soil.  This is the part where we sweat a whole lot.Hard Work Unloading Soil  Unloading Soil


Never underestimate the capacity for a small group of seemingly small children to get a WHOLE lot done!

Here's our finished bed.

Straw Bale Raised Bed

What will we grow in it?

Growing Kids

One happy teacher and whole bunch of proud kids!

Our other fun project of the day was peeling and braiding our harvested garlic to ready it for drying.

Peeling the garlic is a very satisfying chore.

Ellie Peeling Garlic

Braiding London 2

Isn't it beautiful all hung up in our outdoor kitchen classroom?

Garlic Hanging

Day 5: Friday Feast

I can harvest, prepare and eat delicious and healthy foods from our garden.

Today is our first Friday Feast day.  We put ourselves to work preparing toppings for our pizzas and cleaning and slices the vegies we harvested from the garden.

Stevie and Moe learned how to saute onions and cook them until they caramelized.

Friday Feast Roots & Shoots 1 Friday Feast Roots & Shoots-saute

Chopping potatoes and onions harvested earlier this morning.

Friday Feast Roots & Shoots-cutting onions


This crew of washed and sliced carrots and cucumbers and prepared a lovely yogurt dill dipping sauce with fresh herbs.

Friday Feast Roots & Shoots 2

And, finally, it's feasting time!  A few students prepared our menu board and made sure the tables were set and looking pretty for our meal while Cat got the coals going in the pizza oven.

Friday Feast Roots & Shoots-Menu Board Friday Feast Roots & Shoots-Cat Oven


An awesome meal, prepared by all and shared with family and friends.

Friday Feast Roots & Shoots-Rowan and Micah

Micah explains to Dr. Susan how to make a pizza.

Friday Feast Roots & Shoots- Micah with Dr. S

Friday Feast Roots & Shoots-Group

Friday Feast Roots & Shoots-familyThank you to our food sponsors this week: For seed & soil contributions, ASAP, Sow True Seeds and Fifth Season.  For food contributions, FEAST, Trader Joe's and French Broad Food Coop.  You help make healthy cooking and eating in the schools possible.  We appreciate you!