Saturday, July 20, 2013

Drexel Neumann Academy at the Farm, by Joanne

Hi, I've been working with Drexel Neumann Academy's 3rd-grade class, 23 children and their teacher Cindi O'Hanlin, since April. I am very fortunate that Mimi Hall, Red Hill Farm workshare, has been able to help out with the classes and their visits to the farm.
Class portrait!
Topics in the classroom have included how plants grow, planting seeds, making hummus, nutritional information on food groups, and the sugar content of drinks. Amazing--apple juice has about as much sugar as Coke! While apple juice has the added benefit of vitamin C, its sugar content suggests fruit juices should be limited to one cup a day.

The kids, w/ Mimi at back right and Cindi front right
At the farm, the students planted the plants they grew from seeds, learned about chickens, bees, and how we grow organic foods. They had a chance to look under the microscope at the soil and, of course, bugs! On their last visit, they planted and harvested beans!
Students with green beans!
Our relationship will continue with Drexel Neumann Academy in the fall, as well as schools in the Penn Delco school district, St. Francis de Sales School in Lenni (click here for more info), the Neumann Child Development Center (click here), and the Girl Scouts.

Another group shot--cool kids!
PLEASE NOTE:  in the shareroom we're selling bright, cheery grocery bags to help fund our educational outreach progams. They're only $6 and are made of 80& recycled materials. Your support would be *much* appreciated!

Thanks from Joanne Rosenbaum, Farm Education Coordinator
Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia

***A note on Drexel Neumann Academy:  St. Katharine Drexel School was the last Catholic school in Chester, PA, in 2005, yet it was scheduled to close due to declining enrollments that year. To remedy the situation, the Diocese of Philadelphia, Neumann University, the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia, and St. Katharine Drexel Parish decided to create Drexel Neumann Academy, an independent Catholic school run on Franciscan principles of love, peace, and caring for people and the environment. The new school opened in 2006, with no discrimination on religion, financial resources, or race--in fact, over 85% of the students are non-Catholic!  For more on the wonderful work done by Drexel Neumann Academy, click here.  If you're wondering who St. Katharine Drexel is, she is Philadelphia's first woman saint (1858-1955, canonized in 2000)! She came from a wealthy background (her father founded Drexel University) but was moved by the plights of poor Native Americans and African Americans, becoming a nun in 1889 (the Philadelphia papers proclaimed in large headlines, "Miss Drexel enters a Catholic Convent--Gives Up Seven Million!" (For more on St. Katharine Drexel, see here.)

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