Photo by Allan B.

Construction is underway on the asphalt grounds of P.S. 216 in Gravesend, making way for an experimental “edible schoolyard” that has been planned for more than a year.

The $1.6 million project will turn a half-acre of the yard into a garden, greenhouse and a kitchen classroom for students to get more connected with their foods. Teachers will design curriculum in just about every subject – from math and sciences, and on to the humanities – that will explore different aspects about growing and eating healthy foods.

Star foodies David Chang, of Momofuku, and Alice Walters, of California’s Chez Panisse, are teaming up to raise funds and advise on the project. Chang said the project will teach kids about responsibility as well as nutrition.

“Say a child raises this beautiful beet,” he told Oprah.com. “It’s going to give her a sense of ownership, and that changes everything. You stop taking things for granted; you become less wasteful.” It’s also noted that studies show that kids in school-garden programs increase their fruit and vegetable intake by two servings a day.

P.S. 216, located at 350 Avenue X, is the first New York City affiliate of the Edible Schoolyard program, and the most expensive. Berkeley, New Orleans and Los Angeles already have learning gardens set up, but none function year-round as P.S. 216′s will. Administrators hope the program will make the school into a center for environmental and agricultural studies.

For more information, check out the New York Times’ coverage of P.S. 216′s schoolyard, and check out Edible Schoolyard’s website.

Photo by Allan B.

Photo by Allan B.

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  • Anonymous

    This is one of the greatest things that can be done for the future…

    Teaching people to eat “healthy” is awesome…

    Never saw so many “fat” “obese” people till coming to the United States…

    Studies show that the USA spends the most on health care, but dont live longer than Asians.. This is the first step in changing the way people eat in the USA…

    This is the first step in PREVENTATIVE medicine..

    Each obese child in school should be motivated to go to the gym and eat right..

    USA has so much to learn from Obesity from Europe, Asia, Middle East, Africa and more..

    Go Green,
    Go Organic
    Go in the RIGHT direction

    • Anonymous

      I actually agree with Eddie on this one. America has a serious problem with overeating. I beleive that it has something to do with indulgences and how Americans feel that they don’t have to worry about themselves, a kind of “invulnerability”.

      • Anonymous

        Galaxymover,

        If you have a chance see the movie FOOD INC

        Think about Mcdonalds ( CHEAP food, no clean up to worry about, ready in the spot, no cooking required, taste great ) Dollar Menu.
        Advertised to kids.

        • Anonymous

          I actually did see that movie. I thought it was pretty hilarious.

  • BrooklynBus

    Last month I visited my old high school in East Flatbush. They turned part of their front lawn into a green garden years ago. Every Wednesday, the sell produce to the neighborhood at cheap prices. There is a dearth of produce stores and supermarkets in the area.

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