We’re immensely grateful to build on the work going on in communities across Chicago to support students and families. This September and October, we kicked off a very special bi-monthly partnership with the Academy for Global Citizenship and Grocery Run Club led by Pilot Light Fellow and 2nd grade teacher Iván Sarabia of Academy for Global Citizenship in which 104 produce boxes supported an entire class of families’ food necessities and additionally included all the ingredients for two hands-on food education lessons developed and led by their teacher. Recipes for boxes and additional items were compiled after continuously seeking feedback and ideas from families while also assuring every item was either part of the recipe or had accompanying details around its use to assure nothing would be wasted.
Iván’s lessons used food as a lens to learn about matter. In his first lesson, Iván compared and contrast two different mixtures of ingredients – banana bread batter and fruit salad. Iván asked students: is it possible to remove the individual ingredients of each mixture in order to describe them? Students answered: it depends on the mixture and what state of matter it is in!
Building off the first lesson (and on another 70-degree day in Chicago!) and students’ knowledge, the second lesson used pizza as a lens (with dough and sauce from our friends at Pizza Lobo) to learn about how heat can transform matter into a different state: dough being a slow-moving “liquid” that, once heated, becomes a solid that doesn’t move!
Students used descriptive words to compare and contrast the cheese and dough before and after it was cooked. Iván then tasked students to create a pizza, any pizza at all, that represented their identity by selecting ingredients that were metaphors to personality traits! We think we learned a bit more about one another by sharing our pizzas!
In both lessons, students were able to attend the lesson outdoors at their school’s parking lot and pick up a kit to bring home or opt to attend virtually and have the box delivered to their home by Grocery Run Club’s own rockstars, CPS alumni, and longtime friends of ours: Lucía Angel and Jorge Saldarriaga. Boxes also included recipe cards designed by the ever-talented Leila Register and locally grown basil and greens for a fresh salad from Gotham Greens.
We’re so excited to grow this program together and continue to bring food education to life this school year! A huge thank you to our Fellows who are doing this work and share our mission of supporting students, the future and current changemakers all around us, in bridging the lessons they learn in their classrooms to the foods on their lunch trays, at home, and in their communities!
You can support the lovely folks at Grocery Run Club by checking out their mission as a community-driven initiative partnering with organizations to supply fresh produce and everyday necessities to underserved neighborhoods in Chicagoland by checking out their website: https://www.groceryrunclub.com/