Farm to School

Teacher showing students vegetable garden

Farm to school enriches the connection communities have with fresh, healthy food and local food producers by changing food growing, purchasing, and education practices at early child care, schools, and nonformal education sites. Farm to school empowers children and their families to make informed food choices while strengthening local economies and contributing to vibrant communities.

Guidelines:
  • Fairness and accuracy
  • Depth
  • Instructional soundness
  • Usability

Whether you are an educator, farmer, food business owner, parent, food service worker, funder, or policymaker, this database has farm to school resources for you! The database includes factsheets, guides, toolkits, menus, recipes, curriculum, webinars, journal articles, sample policies, and reports covering topics from how to get started with farm to school to food service training, starting and maintaining school gardens, network building, marketing, culinary education, and more.

teacher with high school students looking at laptop in field
Resource

The National Farm to School Network’s Resource Database houses the best of the best farm to school resources from partners and collaborators across the country. The database can be searched by setting (e.g., preschool, K-12 school, farm to institutions, on the farm, after school, and other), as well as by an extensive list of topic areas including school gardens, procurement, education, food justice, hunger, Native communities, fundraising, policy and more.

Resource Category:

Website
Guidelines:
  • Depth
  • Action orientation
  • Usability

The guide informs would-be greenhouse managers and educators as their schools explore ways to build new infrastructure or reinvest in existing greenhouse facilities. It supports educators every step of the way, including factors to consider before getting started, how to build a greenhouse program, and connections to education standards. The manual specifically targets the use of an educational greenhouse as: an alternative classroom for project-based learning, a setting to experiment with seedlings and cuttings, an indoor garden for growing herbs and vegetables, and an extension of an existing school garden program.

young student standing in greenhouse
Resource

This guide supports and expands the planting and use of school gardens and greenhouses, farm to school activities, and the integration of plant science in the curriculum. The manual lays out a basic understanding of greenhouses, how to integrate greenhouses into lessons, and how to use greenhouses in classroom curricula and after-school activities.

Resource Category:

Publication, Book
Guidelines:
  • Emphasis on skills building
  • Action orientation
  • Usability

The hands-on, experiential learning environment a farm provides is invaluable to children’s educational growth. This guide makes a trip to a farm accessible and fun. The guide includes group management and safety considerations, trip tips for farmers and teachers, field trip lesson plans focused on a variety of produce, grains, meat, dairy, seeds, and alternative energy, as well as necessary forms for farm field trip success.

shelves of fresh produce
Resource

This guide was created to be a resource for teachers and farmers to support Farm-to-School programming throughout Vermont and beyond. The guide provides a collection of creative, standards-based lessons for teachers of students K-8 who want to integrate hands-on learning into their school curriculum.

Resource Category:

Publication, Book
Guidelines:
  • Fairness and accuracy

This collection highlights children’s books that feature characters from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, many of which are authored by writers of color. The list also includes a number of books that are either bilingual English-Spanish or written exclusively in Spanish and covers a wide variety of farm to ECE related topics, including gardening, farms, cooking, family meals, farmers’ markets, shopping for food and more.

Young student looking at book with hand holding leaf
Resource

In honor of Multicultural Children’s Book Day, The Food Trust released this list of over a hundred books with farm to ECE themes that feature characters from Black, Latino, Middle Eastern/Arab, First/Native Nations, Asian, and multiracial backgrounds.

Resource Category:

Website
Guidelines:
  • Action orientation
  • Usability

Focusing on ‘the story of your food,’ this curriculum guide is beautifully designed and uses storytelling and action-oriented projects to educate students about the reality of our food system and to inspire them to take action in their communities. Each activity theme includes an essential question, background information, materials, activity instructions, worksheets, vocabulary, an assessment, and extension ideas. The final activity theme, Action Projects, guides students through choosing, planning, and carrying out action projects related to food and sustainability.

fresh produce in bowls
Resource

This curriculum actively engages students in a meaningful conversation about food and food systems. The activities give students opportunities to reflect on current food practices, to explore more sustainable ones, and to link their learning to relevant action. Activity themes include The Story of Food; Seasonal, Local Food; Food Traditions; Food and Ecosystems; Analyzing Food Ads; School Lunch Survey; and Action Projects.

Resource Category:

Publication