Our 2014 Program
Our 2013 program spanned across six months, in the style of after-school instruction, three days per week. In 2014, we changed it up a bit. Through a partnership with the Sand Hills Community Wellness Center, running out of the Presbyterian Church of the Sand Hill, we launched a FULL-DAY, FULL-WEEK summer program. It. Was. Awesome. Though we decreased the span of the program in terms of months, we GREATLY increased contact hours with our youth participants. That means our children, volunteers, and family members received MORE instruction time in Natural Cooking, gained MORE experience Organic Gardening, worked out for MORE hours, learned a BIGGER variety of Fitness exercises, learned Nutrition Science from a GREATER number of instructors, and we even added a component: Natural Sciences. Oh yeah. We made rockets. (Don't worry parents, it was just Alka Seltzer.)
As usual, we begin in the garden. Not only did we plant, harvest, re-plant, seed start, and maintain...we also constructed the garden itself! 2013 Program Participants were welcomed back to cater for the 30 community members who showed up to help build in May. In the end, the GSCK had nine raised beds, grew an overwhelming amount of produce, took our veggies to our kitchen and made them into lunch. Special recognition to our Girl Scout Gold Award Recipient, whose Take Action project: Gardening for Good Health won her the coveted Gold Award, the very highest bestowed on a Girl Scout.
Fitness & Nutrition
This time around, we enjoyed weekly afternoon yoga classes through a partnership with Lizzy Swiderski, yoga teacher extraordinaire! We also swam at our local swim club, The Willows, walked outside in the sunshine, learned a huge number of exercises from our partner Michael Digiaocchini from Orange Theory Fitness in West Windsor, played outdoor and indoor games with physical education teacher, Steve Jeffries, and we played SPUD whenever, wherever, we could. For Nutrition Science, we welcomed Kim Arnold from Integrative Nutrition Therapy and Jeanette Grimes from the American Diabetes Association to give us workshops and fill our heads and mouths with healthy facts!
Participants worked together as a team to prepare lunch for themselves on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. Under the instruction of our Natural Chef, Allie O'Brien, participants as young as 8 years old learned advanced cooking methods, such as knife skills, high-heat cooking, gluten free baking, raw and health supportive desserts, and more. We even made our own vegan mint chocolate cookie ice cream with mint from our own garden!!! It was fantastic.
Workin' it out with Deeg!
Family Meal at Sand Hills Community Wellness Center
Our Girl Scout teaching us about Pollinators!
Our new component happened rather organically (our favorite). Board Member, Trainer, Author of The Scientist in Your Cupboard, and Chef Allie's wonderful mom, Carole O'Brien headed up the Natural Science component of our 2014 Summer Program. In the beginning, "Science With Carole" was a helpful time filler between activities. Then, the kids loved it SO much we decided to make it a thing. Participants enjoyed hands-on science experiements during weekly workshops. From molecules moving to chemical reactions, we gasped, jumped, oohed, and ahhed our way towards a better understanding of Natural, Chemical, and Physical Sciences.
You can have your very own copy of The Scientist in Your Cupboard by ordering through the GSCK Merch Page SOON!