Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program
The school kitchen began as an idea in 2007. The school council made a decision to put aside a proportion of the funds raised from the annual school fair each year until there was enough money to install a kitchen and begin the program. The fundraising total was achieved after the 2012 Fair and the kitchen was installed during the Term 3 holidays.
The school community contributed consumables and equipment to get the program started and a commitment was made to fund it each year. Staff and parents attended training with the Stephanie Alexander Foundation and the program commenced in 2013. Our vegetable gardens have been expanded and now supply much of the fresh produce needed for the cooking class each week. The garden and kitchen coordinators are parents, and other parents and community members attend the sessions each week to assist and supervise the students.
The school always welcomes extra volunteers. Community members can contact the office to add their name to the roster. (A Working With Children Check is required for volunteer work in the school but this is easily obtained and free.) Volunteers do not have to be expert cooks or gardeners. All that is required is enthusiasm!
The garden sessions include garden maintenance, care of the school chooks, planting, harvesting and composting. Our garden area is continually changing and developing as we experiment with growing the different fruits and vegetables used in the kitchen sessions.
Kitchen sessions include the preparation of dishes from many parts of the world. The menus are varied and the students get to try things they might never have tasted before. Kitchen sessions emphasise ‘home style cooking’ and the students learn safe techniques, food safety and hygiene, food presentation skills, preserving and table etiquette.
Every kitchen session ends with a ‘Shared Table’ - a sampling of all of the dishes that have been cooked that day. Volunteers join the students for the Shared Table and they encourage healthy eating, good table manners and discussion of the foods prepared.
|The School Chooks
We have routines to minimise food waste including composting
and chook husbandry