22 May 2009

198 Days - Learning to Go Local by Growing Local

With new appreciation for the Italians, I tried making my own pasta today. It was a disaster, but my heart was in the right place — I'm trying to go as local as possible.

My students and I grew our own wheat last year and made pizzas from scratch. It was a wonderfully transformative experience for me — sowing the seeds, tending the crop, harvesting, threshing and milling the wheat, and then making pizza dough from the freshest flour in the world. Talk about the circle of life!

My students are so young that they probably didn't recognize this as an extraordinary experience for practically all Canadians. This year we're planting enough wheat for everyone in our whole school to make their own pizza from scratch.

My pasta was decidedly not delicious, but it was a fun way to start realizing how we can start going local.

It's not just the Italians I feel new-found respect for, it's the "ancients" who somehow knew/learned how much of everything they needed to grow and store for the winter.

One of the categories in our Fall Fair's Young People's Agriculture section is "If I grew the food my family needs, I would...." I wonder how many of us adults could answer that question correctly! (Nifty math lesson though.)

And to keep you reading on learning to feed ourselves as transformative education for sustainability, check out Orion Magazine's Destined for Failure by Jason Peters.

My students' pizzas, made from scratch...ing in the dirt, planting, tending, harvesting, threshing, milling, mixing, decorating and baking.

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I would appreciate hearing your thoughts or questions on this post or anything else you've read here. What is your take on courage and compassion being an important part of the solution to the climate change emergency?