In the Fall of 2015, Ms. Cooper’s 2nd grade class participated in Heal the Planet’s 6-week SEED (Sustainable Energy Education) Project.
This was just one of multiple presentations of the SEED Project in schools in Dade and Broward County in 2015. Each session contained a plant-based Nutrition activity, exercise, and tools for stress management. Planting the seeds to healthy habits was the theme of the program, and for the introduction the discussion was about the similarities of what plants and humans need in order to grow and thrive.
In addition to water, nutrients, sunlight, and space, kids shared nurturing concepts including love, patience, energy, strength, and passion. Then, using coconut fiber, radish seeds, and a small 3 oz. paper cup, we had each student plant their own seed with the intention to create a special wish for the new school year.
Another important concept that was taught was N.E.W.S. (Nutrition, Exercise, Water, and Sleep) – an easy acronym to remember the 4 Pillars of Health, important healthy habits for well-being, and ways to incorporate them into their daily lives.
Students learned how to be Label Detectives, avoid processed foods and sugary drinks, and make healthier alternatives such as the Green Smoothie. With our “Think before You Drink” sugar demo, they learned how much sugar is really in soda, and how to make healthier meals and snacks. They also learned important environmental themes such as how to conserve water and electricity through our Meatless Taco Lettuce Wrap, Zucchini Pasta, and Date Seed Energy Ball Nutrition activities. The kids were taught different ways to cook and prepare foods without using the oven, and how to substitute healthier alternative ingredients such as using oatmeal and dates instead of using flour and sugar to make cookies.
In addition, kids learned about Nature’s Pharmacy and how the physical appearance of certain fruits, veggies, and herbs corresponds to the appearance of the organs in their bodies the foods support. The children had a culinary experience using their senses to explore the appearance, smell, taste, and texture of the food samples. The students participated and had fun learning how to increase their energy naturally by having a full body workout through short bursts of physical activity using sports and dance movements.
They learned the value of using Stress Management strategies such as deep breathing, yoga poses, and mindful movements to keep them calm, balanced, and centered.
We are so grateful to have empowered Ms. Cooper’s class at Nova Eisenhower Elementary to make healthy food choices and participate in sustainable lifestyle habits!