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Edible Education

Dear Families,

Continuing its pattern of pouring rain in the morning and clearing up in the afternoon, the weather cleared up just long enough yesterday for the long-awaited garden sale / farmers market. Grade 4/5 students practiced their best shuk Hebrew as they haggled with parents and friends over the sale price of agvaniyot , gezer or oogat kishuim. I guess you know that you’re on the right track when your kids actually get excited about vegetables – the students had so much fun! I’m going to go out on a limb (no pun intended) and suggest we are one of a very small number of Jewish day schools in Canada that is lucky enough to have its own edible garden, that grows and shares fresh produce with the local community and those in need, and does it all through hands on education, and hard work while having fun in the dirt.

image (3)Watching students harvest, prepare and do all that is necessary to go from garden to table is an amazing thing. A big thank you to Malki Moshkovitz and master gardener extraordinaire Mary Cohene for working with the students on the harvest and all the preparations for the farmer’s market, which included cleaning the produce, cutting up and bagging vegetables for sale, baking zucchini cake and even making Israeli salad (taim!). And a todah rabah to Morah Shoshi who helped Grade 4/5 prepare to buy and sell the produce in Hebrew. It was a wonderful display of how our dual curriculum is truly integrated, and how our school programming complements, supports and enriches the learning taking place in the classroom (and vice versa).

Margaret EvansAccess to fresh fruit and vegetables is a cornerstone to good health, and we are excited to play a small part in contributing to healthier eating habits and food choices in our community, through the edible garden and through education. We are thrilled to be welcoming registered nurse and life coach Margaret Evans to speak to families on Monday, October 28th, 2013 at 6:30 PM; her topic is Could It Really Be Something They Ate: The life changing impact of addressing food sensitivities in children. Tickets are $10 per person – please call the office for tickets at (604) 275-3393. We hope to see you there!

On a sad, but related note with respect to nutritional choice, an ode to Nutella, the chocolate hazelnut spread, which finally went kosher after 30+ years of me ogling its ubiquitous container at the grocery store (the two are not related, the ogling and the going kosher). The first time I stuck a spoon into it and tasted it was truly one of the high points of my life (I don’t get out much…).  And now this, from Dr. Yoni Freedhoff, a leading obesity expert and physician at the University of Ottawa and Bariatric Medical Institute: “Make no mistake, Nutella is spreadable candy. It is not healthy, breakfast does not love it. You might love it, but this does not help to make a nutritious breakfast fun, it helps to make a nutritious breakfast non-nutritious.” He even posted a video of his research into Nutella. Education can be a dangerous thing…

Shabbat Shalom u’Mevorach,

Mar Abba

P.S. I have a jar of slightly used Nutella at home. If anyone wants it, call me at the school.

P.P.S. This Shabbos is Parshat Noach. The best retelling of the story is courtesy of Bill Cosby, here.  Enjoy, and pass it along!!!


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