A School Culture Transformation Grant from the Rhode Island Department of Education has made it possible for Cuffee fourth graders to take part in the harvest at Pat’s Pastured this fall. A regular vendor of organic produce and meats at Hope Street Farmer’s Market in Providence, this pasture-based farm in East Greenwich raises livestock and vegetables using systems that help reduce environmental damage.
In October, the fourth graders in Ms. Gale’s class dug up sweet potatoes and enjoyed making soup for their lunch. They also spent part of their day with the educators on the farm observing the animals in their habitats, and learning about how the sustainable organic farming practices at Pat’s are designed to support soil health, promote healthy ecosystems, and prevent over-grazing.
Spending the day outdoors on the farm brought academic concepts to life and allowed the students to discover how the earth sciences they study and the foods they eat impact our environment and our health.