We’re hosting a few events this month and with the growing season off to a sunny start, our engagement officers, are ready to support your school food growing by providing information and resources at teachers forums!
Timings for both events are 4 – 5.30pm. Locations to be announced soon.
Islington and Camden are hosting the first of two twilight forums on 20 June, with a focus on the Early Years setting. Come along to find out how to incorporate growing in a setting that suits your learning environment. Whether it’s starting seeds off indoors and then moving them outside once they’re stronger; or discovering ways of dealing with pests such as slugs, the session will no doubt offer resources to get you started or help you along your already established journey of food growing.
Bexley hosts the second twilight forum on 26 June, with a focus on infusing food growing into the Primary Curriculum from Year 1 up to and including Year 6. This session will empower you to start growing using whatever space you have by giving you the confidence to teach any area of the curriculum through the use of your outdoor space. Initiatives along with resources will be shared including how to grow your own picnic and how to use food growing in an enterprising way.
The Mayor of London opened the doors of City Hall to welcome six London schools to hold their very own Schools Marketplace on Thursday 14 July 2016. The event showcased delicious food grown in London’s schools – from salads, chards, rocket, beetroot, potatoes and herbs, to home made products such as plum jams and mango chutneys, tasty elderflower cordials, mint dips and more.
The Schools Marketplace event is part of the Growathon initiative, which aims to get 50,000 pupils involved in food growing by the end of the summer term, run by the FGSL.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, visited every stall and said:
“I’m really pleased to host the Schools Marketplace in City Hall. I want to help Londoners to have access to better food, and lead healthier lifestyles, so it’s great to see these young people growing their own grub and developing entrepreneurial skills.”
The Schools Marketplace was organised by FGSL and partner Capital Growth, who were delighted with the number of schools that took part in this and another initiatives as part of its Growathon campaign, which also included a film competition and other marketplace events across London.
Chair of the London Food Board, Rosie Boycott, said:
“These young people have shown that with some hard work and only a small amount of money you can create a wide range of food and drink using ingredients you have grown yourself. By starting young they’re laying the groundwork for a lifetime of enjoying their own produce.”
As well as produce stalls, an award ceremony for the Capital Growth “Showcase your Growing Competition” took place at 1.30pm. Judged by Chris Collins, best known as the former TV Blue Peter gardener, the winning schools (Selwyn Primary School – Newham, Glebe School – Bromley and Copenaghen Primary – Islington, were given prizes, including a great set of Bulldog Tools.
Former TV Blue Peter gardener, Chris Collins, said:
“It’s brilliant to see schools getting involved in food growing and enjoying themselves whilst they’re at it. Not only are young people learning where our food comes from, they’re also getting healthy, gaining valuable skills and learning to be enterprising by selling their produce at Marketplace events like this one today!”
During the ceremony, the winners of Capital Growth’s ‘Harvest-ometer Challenge’ were also annouced. The challenge inspired and helped schools to grow and measure their harvest with an online tool that calcualtes the value of your harvest. Trafalgar Infant School, Richmond won the “Most food grown per Sqm” award; Charlton Manor Primary School, Greenwich, the “Biggest range of produce” title and Ambler Primary School, Islington, was nominated as “Growing School Hero”.
London schools can access free support, tips and materials by completing the Food Growing Schools: London survey
Every school that completes the survey will be entered into a draw to win some fantastic prizes, including a meal for two worth £50 at Wahaca, a visit from the highly skilled FGSL gardening team and freebies to support their school’s food growing activities.
In celebration of Food Growing Schools: London’s #Growathon – the biggest school food growing challenge of the year – Trees for Cities ran a short film competition about planting, sowing, growing, gardening, harvesting and eating good food at school! They had a number of amazing entries and after careful consideration the panel of judges (which included Horticulturalist and Trees for Cities patron Chris Collins; Stephanie Wood, Founder of School Food Matters; Colette Bond, Head of Education, Garden Organic and Kate Groves, Project Manager, Food Growing Schools: London) have picked the winners.
This year’s winner of the Grow On Film It! competition is Copenhagen Primary School in Islington. Copenhagen have won £500 worth of gardening equipment and their school’s film will be shown at the coming Schools Marketplace event at the City Hall on Thursday 14 July.
The runner up prize was awarded to Meridian High School in Croydon who get £100 worth of gardening and growing equipment. A special mention went to Midfield Primary School in Bromley for their great contribution called “Snail on a Trail”.
Every school submitting a short film will receive a seasonal growing pack
Food Growing Schools: London are inviting schools in Camden & Islington interested in food growing projects to a forum at Rhyl Primary School, Rhyl Street, NW5 3HB on Monday 20th June from 3.30 to 5.30pm.
This forum is a chance to gain inspiration and ideas from another food growing school, share ideas and learn something new through a seasonal activity run by Food Growing Schools: London. We would also like these forums to act as a swap shop, so please bring along seeds, plants, tools and educational resources you would either like to share, give away or swap with other schools. There will also be plenty of free seeds and resources available from Food Growing Schools: London.
These forum meetings are open to anyone from Camden & Islington schools involved in or wishing to develop a food growing project, staff, parents, volunteers…
Please contact Paul Sadler at firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm you would like to attend.