Edible Experiences for Students and Families
ESYNOLA creates unique experiences for each grade level of K-8, including field trips to botanical gardens and insectariums and local farms, seasonal food celebrations for citrus and strawberries, and culinary events at which local chefs and farmers often make guest appearances. Edible Experiences are an essential part of our programming as they take our palates on a journey from the field to the fork.
We celebrate the bounty of Louisiana through seasonal festivals that highlight local produce and farmers. At Sweet Potato Fest at Arthur Ashe Charter School, the whole community is invited to the parade, harvest, and wellness fair. Watermelon Day at Samuel J. Green Charter School is a festival celebrating strong ties between First Line Schools and James Beard Award Winner Farmer Ben Burkett, who has brought watermelons from the Indian Springs Farmer Cooperative in Mississippi for over a decade.
Members of the school and neighborhood community are welcome to participate in gardening, composting, and harvesting, and we share lunch together.
At Family Food Nights we invite entire families to cook with seasonal ingredients from the garden, offering them healthy meal and snack preparation alternatives and opportunities to increase their knowledge about health and nutrition. We also host expo-style Family Food Nights with fun, delicious, and interactive tables from community partners such as Chartwells, Jack & Jake's, the Crescent City Farmers Market, LPHI School Health Connection, FirstLine and New Orleans Public Libraries, Slow Food Youth NOLA, and Youth Run NOLA.
Afterschool, some of our middle school students grow and create value-added products from the garden, such as hot pepper and grape jams, vinegars, granola and soaps, and sell them at our local neighborhood markets.