When Shane and I met Diane and Katrina from Audubon’s Green Kids program for the first time, we were impressed by their enthusiasm and passion for the program. They emphasized how important outdoor education is for children, and how Green Kids and Salad Science can help kids learn in non-traditional ways. They also stressed, over and over, how kids would go from hating vegetables to adoring them at the end of the program. Shane and I believed in their enthusiasm, but were a bit skeptical about the whole “loving vegetables” thing. On the first day of filming, when Katrina announced they were planting lettuce seeds, a chorus of “Ewww” was heard from every group. How were these kids, who said they never ate vegetables, ever going to suddenly be chowing down on salads and coming back for thirds?
It was a good thing we didn’t bet on it, because 6 weeks later we were proven wrong. We watched (and filmed) as the kids harvested their lettuce and stood in line for salads – loading up on the vegetables and eating so enthusiastically they licked their plates clean! The Whole Foods representatives kept bringing out more and more trays of toppings as the kids plowed through the carrots, corn, broccoli, and tomatoes. Each and every kid had a huge smile on their face as they ate, and even the ones who’d been most vehemently against veggies sure seemed to enjoy eating them.
Green Kids’ goal is to help schools foster environmental and watershed stewardship while meeting curriculum goals. The Salad Science program is for the younger kids, who get to grow their own food and learn about where food comes from. Going through the program with the kids, it was incredible to see their transformation. Not only did Salad Science teach them about the life cycle of plants, about nutrition, and about agriculture, but these kids got to eat the food they’d worked to produce.
As an added bonus for MLP, the Salad Science program didn’t yet have a logo. Since Erica, our intern, loves graphic design, we asked her to create one based off the materials they sent over. She did a phenomenal job, and Diane and Katrina loved the logo she created. You can see her finished work at the end of the video!