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Visit Lahaina Intermediate’s School Garden

See the School Garden at Lahaina Intermediate School

Take a “virtual tour” of the Grow Some Good school garden at Lahaina Intermediate School, featured in the video below.  This piece was created by students as part of the PBS Hawaii news show HIKI NŌ.

“We Can All Work Together”

The video features many of the students, faculty and staff that support the garden. School Principal, Stacy Bookland, says the garden has taught her:

“we can all work together to contribute to something positive, not only
in our community, but in our bodies, in our minds, and in the growth
of our students.”

Academic Impact

Teachers also chime in, explaining how they see the garden benefiting youth by reinforcing classroom lessons, while at the same time giving them life-long skills that can increase their self-sufficiency. Their comments demonstrate school gardens have a positive impact on academics and learning.

Lots of good things are growing at Lahaina Intermediate School – Take a look!

HIKI NŌ

This piece was created by students in HIKI NŌ, an educational initiative by PBS Hawaii. HIKI NŌ is the nation’s only state-wide student run news program. Students from middle and high schools across Hawaii produce PBS-quality video news segments about current issues and people of interest in our community. This story first aired during the First All-Middle School edition of HIKI NŌ on PBS on May 28, 2015.

Shop Using AmazonSmile to Support Grow Some Good

AmazonSmile

Here’s an easy, automatic way to support Grow Some Good at no cost to you! Every time you purchase something through Amazon using their AmazonSmile program,  .5% of the qualifying purchase amount is donated to Grow Some Good. All you have to do is shop! Millions of products on Amazon qualify for this amazing program. Eligible products are marked “Eligible for Amazon Smile donation” but you don’t even have to worry about that. Your shopping experience at Amazon remains the same as always.

Every Time You Shop

Whenever you go to Amazon, make sure to enter through the AmazonSmile site and select Grow Some Good as your favorite charity.  You can bookmark the page, so it comes up every time. There are also apps and browser extensions that make this super easy.   We also put it right up front on our Grow Some Good page if that is easier for you!

0.5% doesn’t sound like much but let’s all see how much we can raise!

For questions, see the AmazonSmile FAQ page.

To get started, simply click on the icon below.

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The Academic Impact of School Gardens

Harvesting flowers Mieko PhotographyMaui Teachers’ Perspectives

It’s no secret that students, parents, and teachers love our school gardens! During garden visits, students spend hours discovering the wonder of growing their own food; the gardens bring beauty to our school campuses; students, families and members of the community enjoy the fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs they produce. As an organization, we take time at the end of each school year to reflect on how the gardens are fulfilling our goals of providing students with outdoor learning experiences that connect them to their food sources, inspire better nutrition choices, improve health, and teach them how to be better stewards of the land.

As we strive to grow, improve, and to “turnip the beet” in our programs, Grow Some Good conducts an annual Teacher Survey. We wanted to share with you some highlights from the 2015-16 school year.

Survey Results – School Gardens have a Positive Impact

According to the survey, a majority of teachers surveyed report that school gardens have a positive impact in students’ academic achievements in all core curriculum areas, and particularly in science, health, language arts and Hawaiian studies.

We know from more than eight years of managing these programs that hands-on, interactive lessons in the gardens improve retention and help reinforce classroom learning. Maui teachers surveyed agree:

  • 96 percent of teachers’ responses report that garden lessons were very or extremely beneficial in supporting the core curriculum area of science.
  • 72 percent said school gardens are very or extremely beneficial in language arts
  • 66 percent of teachers said school garden programs are very or extremely beneficial in supporting Hawaiian Studies.
  • Nearly all teachers, 97 percent, said school gardens are very or extremely beneficial in in supporting health and nutrition standards.

Teachers were also asked to indicate what attributes they have observed in their students who participate in school gardens:

  • 94 percent said they saw an increase in environmental awareness.
  • 73 percent said they noticed improvements in health and nutrition.
  • 44 percent also noted improved social skills and behaviors.
  • 48 percent witnessed an increase in community spirit and interest.

“We Love Mondays!”
Girls with Kale Wailuku El

Teachers shared their thoughts on the impact school gardens have on their students.

Leslie Farthing, sixth-grade Social Studies teacher at Lahaina Intermediate School, said, “This program has been incredible for my students. It is a great introduction to working in a garden. For most students, it is their first time working with plants. They really enjoy it and take pride in their work. [The garden coordinator] always ties it to what we are learning which is very helpful. I did not grow up gardening so as an educator I love the experience as well.”

Teachers also commented:

“The garden is a wonderful addition to our school and the kids love it! Thank you!!”

“My students are so excited to be a part of this program! They are planting gardens of their own and are so inspired by [the garden coordinator].”

“The garden brings out interests and curiosity that I have not seen in class.”

“We are very thankful to have the opportunity to teach our students gardening skills.  This is a life-long skill and our children are learning about how to be self-sustaining.”

girls hanging ipu to dry“We truly enjoy our garden time.  The students learn a lot and it is important to continue to educate our students about healthy eating habits. [The garden coordinator] does an exceptional job sharing her garden knowledge and skills with our students.”

“I truly appreciate the knowledge shared with our students.  This year, [the garden coordinator] had excellent lessons aligned to the Common Core State Standards.  Very impressive.”

“I enjoy watching my students investigating and taking notes.  It shows that they are really interested in the garden.”

“We love Mondays. We get to go to the garden!”

 

For more details, you may review the complete survey results here: Grow Some Good 2016 Teacher Survey Data

Summer School Garden Tours

IMG_3167Grow Some Good supporters recently took a tour of all the good things growing in two of our most established school garden programs at Lokelani Intermediate School and Kihei Elementary School.  Guests spent 2 hours exploring the transformation of garden spaces and learning about the scope of garden planning, education and maintenance involved.

Before & After

Visitors compared the current sites with “before” pictures to fully appreciate the school beautification improvements since the school garden projects began.

Lokelani Intermediate School

The before and after photos below feature one of many building sites at Lokelani, comparing the original landscaping in 2011 to present.  Grow Some Good led student and faculty efforts to renovate the entire campus, earning a statewide Cooke Foundation Beautification Award in 2013.

Lokelani classroom - before and after

Lokelani Intermediate also houses Grow Some Good’s equipment and tool resource center and serves as the site of the main Grow Some Good nursery, supporting 12 Grow Some Good schools and Maui School Garden Network schools across Maui, Lanai and Molokai. This central storage facility for plants, gardening tools, event supplies, and lesson materials is critical to providing consistent school garden operations throughout the islands.

Kihei Elementary School

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Kihei School Garden Coordinator Nadine Rasmussen (left) showcases a vibrant kalo (taro) patch, compared to the original garden expansion (above) in 2009 where temporary grow bags were installed while soil was mulched and amended for in-ground planting.

 

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Here we have three layers of activity in the garden: carrots growing in the foreground, tomato plants climbing behind them up the base of the trellis, and ipu hanging up above, where they are drying in preparation to be made into musical instruments as part of our cultural studies program.

 

 

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Program Operations Manager Nio Kindla talks about the importance of composting and soil sifting, and how it benefits the entire garden.

 

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Visitors gather under a shade structure that was recently built through a capital improvement grant to protect students from the harsh Kihei sun and provide a comfortable outdoor classroom.

If you would like to join us for an upcoming school garden tour, contact us.

 

Maui RSVP Dine Out Supports Maui Youth Programs May 27 – June 5


Dine Out and Support Maui Charities

chef-paris-nabavi_400x400Award-winning Chef Paris Nabavi, owner of Sangrita Grill and Cantina, continues to make his mark on the Maui community.

Grow Some Good is thrilled to be included in his new “Maui RSVP” dining program, which supports eight local non-profits while giving diners an opportunity to dine out at a great discount.

Participating restaurants will offer select entrées and menu items at a 50% discount. Scheduled for the week of May 27th-June 5th, Chef Nabavi has partnered with some of Maui’s best restaurants to join him in his efforts.

Maui RSVP

Flyer Photo CroppedMaui RSVP – Restaurants Support Vital Programs – is designed to support a select group of Maui non-profits that provide services close to Chef Nabavi’s heart: literacy, nutrition, cooking, school gardens, the arts, and support services. One of Chef Nabavi’s goals is to help change the way children eat. Engaging and educational programs, like school gardens, give them an early introduction to nutrition and healthy eating.

Beneficiaries of the Nabavi Legacy Fund are: Book Trust, Grow Some Good, Imua Family Services, Kids Cook / Teens Cook with Heart, Maui Academy of Performing Arts, Maui Culinary Academy, Maui Food Innovation Center, and Maui School Garden Network. The Fund, managed by Grant Central Station, will be distributed to the beneficiaries annually.

“I believe supporting these eight organizations is truly vital to the Maui community,” Chef Nabavi says. “They share a common thread in that they each provide unique services and opportunities to our children, who are the future of our island. Whether it’s nutrition and cooking, education, arts or support services, these groups are dedicated to enhancing lives and empowering Maui’s youth for generations to come.”

The Nabavi Legacy Fund will administer donations for Maui RSVP. Currently the event is scheduled to run again in the fall, from September 23rd – October 2nd.

Participating Restaurants

Participating restaurants for the May 27th-June 5th event include:

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Cane & Canoe at Montage Kapalua

Joey’s Kitchen at Whalers Village

The Mill House at Maui Tropical Plantation

Oceanside at Ma’alaea Harbor Shops

Pūlehu, an Italian Grill, at The Westin Kā‘anapali Ocean Resort Villas

Sangrita Grill & Cantina in Kā‘anapali

Taverna in Kapalua Resort

Three’s Bar & Grill in Kīhei

 

Mahalo, Chef Nabavi, for your continued support of Grow Some Good and our Maui community!

 

 

Taste of School Gardens Gala Grows Some Good!

Sunset views are a given on the Sunset Lawn at Hotel Wailea.Wow! What a night! More than 400 people attended the 4th Annual Taste of School Gardens gala on Saturday March 12th, 2016, on the Hotel Wailea Sunset Lawn. Thanks to all the support from our ‘ohana, we raised $60,000 for more than 3,000 students in school garden programs across Maui.

The evening featured fabulous food prepared by local chefs, fine wines, local brews, and music performed by Maui’s own Soul Kitchen, and a special outdoor garden classroom area for guests to learn more about the school garden program’s lessons and activities.

Soul Kitchen Entertains the Crowd.
Soul Kitchen Entertains the Crowd.

 

Chicken Cacciatore Over Pasta Courtesy of Fabiabi's.
Chicken Cacciatore Over Pasta Courtesy of Fabiabi’s.

Fabulous Food, Wine, Local Brews & Produce!

Featured chefs included: Chef Gary Johnson of Hana Ranch Provisions, Chef Craig Dryhurst of DUO at Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea, Chef Cameron Lewark of Spago, Chef Brian Etheredge of Capische?, Chef Christopher Kulis of The Market, Chef Brian Murphy of Cow Pig Bun, Chef Kevin Laut of The Outrigger Pizza Company and Chef Don Marceaux  of Fabiani’s.

Wine Selections by Chambers & Chambers Wine Merchants, Southern Wine & Spirits, and Young’s Market. Specialty local beer and beer cocktails by Maui Brewing Company.

Also a big mahalo for the amazing generosity of our local farmers and artisans! Produce and local products provided by school gardens in South, Central and West Maui and the following local farms: Local Harvest (Island-wide), Evonuk Farms, Herb Co (Oahu), Hāna Ranch, Kahanu ‘Aina (Wailuku), Kumu Farms (Wailuku), Kupa’a Farms (K

Pizza Courtesy of Outrigger Pizza Company
Pizza Courtesy of Outrigger Pizza Company

ula), Mālama Farms (Haiku), Maui Breadfruit Company, Maui Nui Farm (Kula), Otani Farms (Kula), Simpli-fresh Farms (Lahaina), and SEE Farms (Kula).

 

 

 Wonderful Program

Guests got to enjoy the outdoor classroom experience and participate in one of the most fun activities in the garden – making edible art! Garden equipment and tools were displayed along with special art made by student gardeners.

We Brought the Garden Classroom to the Event.
We Brought the Garden Classroom to the Event.

 Mahalo!

Taste of School Gardens is Grow Some Good’s premier fundraising event to support our community programs.

Grow Some Good’s mission is to cultivate a healthy community by strengthening local agriculture and improving access to nutritious, affordable food. Currently, we provide school garden program support to more than 3,000 students in 12 schools in South, Central, and West Maui.

Your support helps make this happen. Thank you to the many individuals and businesses that are donating their time, talent and resources to our event this year.

Check out our Facebook album for more awesome shots by Mieko Photography!

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Mahalo to our Taste of School Gardens Sponsors

Grow Some Good’s Taste of School Gardens event wouldn’t be a success without our sponsors. Thank you to the many individuals and businesses that are donating their time, talent and resources to our event this year.

mieko photography
Photo by Meiko Photography

Putting the “Taste” in Taste of School Gardens

We want to recognize those who make Taste of School Gardens an outstanding culinary event – our participating chefs and restaurants. This year, we welcome Chef Gary Johnson of the new Hana Ranch Provisions and welcome back our wonderful team of returning chefs, including:

– Chef Craig Dryhurst of DUO at Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea

– Chef Cameron Lewark of Spago

– Chef Brian Etheredge of Capische?

– Chef Christopher Kulis of The Market Maui

– Chef Brian Murphy of Cow Pig Bun

– Chef Kevin Laut of The Outrigger Pizza Company

– Chef Don Marceaux of Fabiani’s

Thank you for sharing your talent and resources to make our event the best school-garden-to-table event on Maui!

New Sponsors in 2016

A very special thank you to Par Hawaii, SunEdison, and Maui School Garden Network for joining us as new sponsors this year. We appreciate your support!

Location, Location, Location

This wonderful venue with a beautiful view gets rave reviews every time. Thank you to the Hotel Wailea for hosting us again this year. We also rely on another Wailea neighbor, the Four Seasons Resort, for providing help in planning and logistical support. Thank you for helping us with the details!

Media Sponsors

We are grateful for our media sponsors, Maui No Ka Oi Magazine, and MauiTime who are helping us spread the word about Taste of School Gardens. With their help, we anticipate another sold-out event this year! Hawaii On TV will provide coverage during the event. Mahalo!

Lights, Please!

A very special mahalo to Epic Lighting for helping us create a gorgeous ambiance after the sun sets. This is our third year working with this top-notch company  – Hawaii’s first and only green business certified, 100% eco-friendly lighting company.

Keeping it Local

Local Harvest  has volunteered their services in a big way – they are  coordinating all of the produce donated from local Maui farmers and bringing it together in time for the chefs to prepare for Saturday night. Mahalo for sharing your time and expertise in sourcing local produce for this event.

Mahalo!

Taste of School Gardens is Grow Some Good’s premier fundraising event to support our community programs. Our programs are hands-on, outdoor learning experiences that cultivate curiosity about natural life cycles, connect students to their food sources, and inspire better nutrition choices. In addition to helping establish food gardens and living science labs in local schools, we provide resources and curriculum support through community partnerships in agriculture, science, food education and nutrition. Your support helps make this happen. Mahalo!

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My First Grade Garden Recipe Book

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Doritos Salad?

Yes!

Find the recipe here in My First Grade Garden Recipe Book.

This book is full of yummy, garden-fresh dishes that are fun for both adults and keiki to prepare. Recipes include: Kale Chips, Easy Ratatouille, Eggplant Parmesan, Lettuce Wraps, Pinakbet, Pesto, Sweet Potato Shoots, Edible Art and more!

Thank you to the students and staff at Kahului Elementary School who created this wonderful book.

Hawaii Legislators Support Farm to School Programs

KITV screenshotOver the past few months, we’ve seen news highlighting school gardens and their importance to supporting better nutrition and local agriculture. On July 7, 2015, Governor David Ige signed Farm to School bill SB 376, which aims to increase the amount of local produce in our school cafeterias.

A recent KITV4 interview quoted Dexter Kishida with the Department of Education (DOE), “Growing it and cooking it are two ways kids eating behaviors change.” The report also estimates the DOE imports more than 80 percent of produce in public school lunches.  That number may be soon decreasing with the signing of this new bill.

The governor’s press release explains “SB 376, Act 218 established the Hawai’i farm-to-school program and funds a farm-to-school coordinator position. Across the nation, farm to school programs are reconnecting students to a better understanding of the food system and where their food comes from. Farm to school programs introduce students to healthier eating habits and help them become familiar with new vegetables and fruits that they and their families will then be more willing to incorporate into their own diets. The farm to school coordinator will negotiate the complicated process of procuring local agricultural for our schools.”

Local farmers have had tremendous challenges competing with mainland prices and Hawaii DOE volume restrictions that require one vendor to supply an entire 256-school system.

“I think one of the important insights is that it doesn’t have to be the exact same suppliers statewide,” said Kyle Datta, general partner at the Ulupono Initiative, in a recent Hawaii Tribune-Herald article. “You can let local agriculture scale up to the community.” He said one of the early missteps in launching statewide farm to school was trying to get local producers to support the needs of the entire state as opposed to their specific areas.

“Maui kids eating Maui pineapple, Oahu kids eating Dole pineapples,” he said. “There’s a lot of things we should have more of that are completely possible.” (Source: Hawaii Tribune-Herald)

Some local charter schools have successfully incorporated local produce into their lunch programs because they manage their own individual procurement. Food hubs, where farmers combine their harvests for higher volume distribution, are also gaining momentum in other school districts nationwide. Here is a recent article in from the St. Paul/Minneapolis Star-Tribune describing one example of this venture.

“We need to make sure students are connecting and understanding where their food comes from and why it matters,” said Lydi Morgan, Coordinator with Hawaii Farm to School & School Garden Hui.

School garden programs are an important part of supporting this initiative. When students grow, harvest and prepare their own dishes using school garden produce, they are more likely to eat fresh fruits and vegetables in school lunches and bring that enthusiasm home to the dinner table.

If you’d like to dig the school garden movement on Maui, visit our volunteer page and introduce yourself! We look forward to seeing you in the garden!