Seeds to Soup

From snapping string beans and peeling potatoes to shucking corn and chopping tomatoes, Meadow Pond Elementary’s students were hands on and having fun on Harvest Day! Each class had time to visit the school garden, talk with gardener Margie Corsello about this year’s growing season, gather a specific ingredient and help prepare the vegetables for soup.

Harvest Day is one aspect of Meadow Pond's garden-to-table initiative, along with Planting Day in the spring and Soup Day just after the harvest. The trio of all-school celebrations make the District's commitment to sustainability tangible and engaging for elementary school students. 

“Will we be able to pop that corn?” asked a student in Meadow Pond Elementary’s garden, looking at corn on nearby stalk. “This is sweet corn,” said gardener Margie Corsello. “Corn that you can pop is another variety.”

She held up a long purple bean for the fifth graders, introducing the concept of diversity in the bean family before shifting to food preparation tips. Students remembered starting the beans from seed last spring in the school’s greenhouse. “I think snapping beans is easier than cutting them,” said Corsello, showing students the length of a bean piece that works for soup.

Under the nearby pergola, parents Adriana Scharb, Nicole Del Pino and Heller Donaton were already stirring soup, adding each new ingredient as the students prepped the tomatoes, potatoes, corn, beans and more.

The next day, parents served the soup in the cafeteria to all classes. The empty bowls at the end of lunch said it all. “The older students wanted third helpings!” said Donaton.