Thursday, October 30, 2014

Ms. Gardner's Class Eats Succotash and Sees a Chrysalis

On October 29, Ms. Gardner's 4th graders visited the edible garden. Today's lesson was a review of the Three Sisters' Garden that 3rd graders planted last spring and also a review of local plants used by the Chumash and Tongva.

The students remembered many of the local plants including hummingbird sage, white sage, black sage, monkey flower, California Poppy and Cleveland Sage. We discussed that the Chumash made potpourri from Cleveland Sage and that the students had done that last year. Today each child took home a branch of Cleveland Sage.

The Three Sisters are corn, zucchini and squash.  Many Native American tribes planted them together, including the Iroquois. The Native Americans celebrated the corn (or maize) harvest at the end of summer. The children enjoyed eating the succotash made from corn, beans and zucchini. Several children enjoyed the zucchini even though they usually don't like it!

After eating the children worked in the garden planting seeds and seedlings, feeding worms in the worm bin and watering. They enjoyed looking at the monarch chrysalis and caterpillars.
October 30---Great news...the monarch emerged from the chrysalis on Thursday morning and we set it free in the garden!!

Thanks to JodiLynne and Ms. Gardner for helping in the garden today! Thanks to Gelson's Market for providing the ingredients for the succotash! Here's a comment from JodiLynne that illustrates the importance of our program: "We have seen a direct link between what kids taste from the garden and what they turn out to like. Just a moment before sampling the three sisters' succotash, children were convinced they wouldn't like it. Low and behold, a moment later, they were asking for seconds!"

Succotash Recipe

  • 12 ounces green beans, trimmed, cut into 3/4-inch pieces (about 3 cups)
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 2 large ears fresh corn, husked
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 small summer squash or zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 2 scallions, finely chopped

    1. Steam, microwave or cook beans in water ( 15 minutes) until tender.
    2. Cut kernels from corn cobs. 
    3. Heat oil and butter in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the corn. Stir to coat well, then add squash (or zucchini), the beans and 2 tablespoons of the bean- cooking liquid or water. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the corn and squash are tender, 8 to 12 minutes. 
    4. Garnish with scallions and or cherry tomatoes for color.

    Planting in the butterfly garden

    One of two caterpillars in the garden

    Planting beet seeds

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