“Planting Seeds for the Future” is an entrepreneurial/garden project based at Border Star Elementary School in Kansas City, Missouri. Working with students in grades 4-6 “Planting Seeds” weaves together themes of financial literacy, small business development, creative writing, and critical thinking all centered on the student run and maintained urban garden. Upper Elementary students will have the opportunity to create their own businesses, with unique marketing, logos and sales ideas generated by the students’ research and production in raised garden beds. Students will maintain journals, create visual art and creative writing projects, conduct research, explore issues of health and wellness, organic gardening, sustainability as well as social and environmental issues centered on food. Planting Seeds seeks to implement steps designed to engage students in positive creative actions, analytical and critical thinking aimed at ending poverty and creating socially & environmentally conscious citizens. Planting Seeds for the Future is made possible by a generous grant from the United Services Community Action Agency and is sponsored through the University of Missouri-Kansas City Division of Diversity, Access & Equity.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Arugula, Salad Greens and Radishes - Oh My!

This past week was an exciting time for the “Planting Seeds” program as the Upper Elementary students hosted their first sales event. For the past two months the students have been creating business ideas, business plans and marketing plans while simultaneously growing lush garden beds filled with arugula, a mix of salad greens, cilantro and “Easter Egg” radishes. At last the time had come to put their hard work into action and sell their goods. The sales day was pure energy and a heavy dose of chaos as each of the three classes had to work as a team to harvest, clean, weigh and then bag the produce, as well as set up the sales tent with tables, chairs and banners. The students were focused and worked hard to create a quality product to sell and an inviting place to host their first customers. Several of the students even created a beautiful fresh flower arrangement for the sales table.

The sale itself was a joy to watch as crowds gathered at both sides of the tables with about twenty students working on one side and a large gathering of parents and community members shopping on the other side. The sale was an amazing success from all possible angles. The students’ hard work was rewarded with an enthusiastic response from their customers who in-turn got some great fresh, organic student grown produce. While no one will be retiring early with the proceeds from the week, the sale was a wonderful financial success as well. Thank you to the Chef/Restaurateur from “Room 39” who made a sizable purchase for that evening’s menu at the restaurant. Once again a special thank you is in order for the incredible group leaders Phillip, Benita, Jeff and Emily who really made this event happen. And, thank you to everyone who stopped by the sales tent and supported these students.

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