Upstate Programs

Course: Fresh Food Comes from the Farm

During this 4-hour immersive program on Katchkie Farm, students walk like a farmer and think like a chef.  As they tour the farm and taste their way through the Learning Garden (which is home to over 200 different things to eat) we encourage students to try new foods and to think about how the fruits, vegetables, herbs, and even flowers they are tasting, could serve as an ingredient to a meal. Youth take part in every step of the story of food including planting seeds, pulling weeds, harvesting organic produce, and creating and sharing a meal together.  In addition, youth also have the opportunity to meet (and hold!) our chickens, collect eggs, pet the sheep, and visit with the pigs.

After pulling a carrot directly from the ground, carrying it to our outdoor kitchen, working with our Farm Chef to create a meal with it, and then sharing that meal, our participants understand where food comes.  After eating a strawberry or cherry tomato that they have just picked themselves, children experience the joy of eating fresh food. Participants are fully engaged in the process of where food comes from, understanding how it grows, and learning to prepare it into a healthy meal.  They walk away with recipes in hand and the basic culinary skills needed to make healthy food choices for themselves.

Children who help cook healthy meals, are more likely to eat them.  And when they’ve picked the ingredients for that meal themselves, we’ve found that they are even more likely to do so.

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Seed-to-Plate Program

Our Seed to Plate Series Program brings our culinary, food literacy, and nutrition education to local schools and youth centers.  This series of 120-minute classes takes place weekly over a period of six weeks as a Spring session (April – May) or Fall session (October – November) and is suitable for children ages fourth grade and up. Each week students develop and build on their culinary skills and knowledge of healthy food as they prepare simple and delicious meals using seasonal ingredients.  Students also learn about gardening and farming through small classroom-based projects such as seeding. Lesson topics include: Seasonal Eating, Tasty Meat Alternatives, Learning to Bake, and Eating the Rainbow.  Recipes and learning objectives are scaled to be age appropriate.  In addition to classroom lessons, all students also take one trip to the farm to participate in a modified version of the Fresh Food Comes from the Farm Program (see above).

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Young Chefs Garden Program (aka Farm Program)

Put on your farmer boots and your chef hats! Spend your last few days of summer vacation with us at Katchkie Farm tasting your way through the Learning Garden, picking fresh organic produce, and cooking up a storm. Come one, two, three, or four days and you’ll be working side by side with farmers and chefs, planting seeds, collecting eggs, and cooking in our wood-fired oven!

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Fresh Tastings

You may see The Sylvia Center out in the community at wellness fairs, farmer’s markets, and other local events.  These “one-time” programs allow us to connect to other local organizations and our community members through cooking demonstrations and taste tests at public events.

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