“We are thrilled to present this award to Chesnut,” says Leesa Carter, Executive Director of the Foundation. “We receive hundreds of submissions each year and have to be very selective to whom we award funding. This is one of the few projects from across the country that we chose to fund. We wish Chesnut great success as they work to implement this important project. It is our hope that our combined efforts will educate, empower, involve and invest today’s youth to cultivate a better tomorrow.”
“Over the past three years, a growing number of our teachers have begun integrating Farm to School concepts into core curriculum lessons, from second grade life science to health education,” explains Chesnut’s Principal, Ms. Veronica Williams. “As Chesnut pursues STEM certification, we are crafting new lesson plans that apply this model school-wide, allowing us to teach the standards through captivating hands-on experiences with real life applications. I am grateful to our new School Master Gardeners for designing the Math Pizza Garden as a life-size teaching tool, and to The Captain Planet Foundation for enabling us to turn this creative concept into a reality."
The Math Pizza Garden, designed by Chesnut’s four certified School Master Gardeners, demonstrates environmentalism by utilizing recycled materials, and features geometrically shaped beds and hardscape elements to facilitate hands-on Farm to School math lessons, from shape identification to multiplication and finding area. Milkweed seeds, also donated by Captain Planet Foundation, will be planted in Chesnut’s Certified Wildlife Habitat and upcoming Native Plants/Sunflower Pollinator gardens, enabling teachers to host science lessons in outdoor classrooms.
The G.A.B.I.E. Bus visit allowed all classes to tour different interactive stations to learn about where their food comes from, as well as careers in agriculture. Students touched various Georgia commodity crops, reading about each crop's importance as they watched video demonstrations of it being harvested and processed; and then had the chance to grind Georgia wheat seeds into flour. After learning about the regions, the climate, and how plants and crops grow, each student planted a seed to take home, to watch and document the growth of their own plant. Finally, they met "Gabie" the bus' honeybee mascot, to learn how honey is made, and why bees play an important role in agriculture.
About Chesnut Charter Elementary School
Chesnut Charter School was established in 1968 to meet the needs of the Peachtree/Dunwoody community. In the 2000-2001 school year, Chesnut began operating as a Charter School committed to educating the whole child - developing young people who are enthusiastic, knowledgeable, well rounded, physically active, and thoughtful. Chesnut strives for it students to become honorable and contributing citizens, who are internally motivated to achieve their highest potential.
About The Captain Planet Foundation
Founded in 1991, CPF was created to support hands-on, environmental projects for youth. CPF's objective is to encourage innovative projects that empower today's children to become environmental stewards. For more information, visit . The Captain Planet Foundation (CPF) is located at 133 Luckie Street NW in Atlanta, Georgia. It can be reached by phone at (404) 522-4270.