After School Professional Development at CSU, Chico

CSU ChicoHealth education specialist Alyson Wylie used the Nourish videos, curriculum, and activities to help engage after-school educators in the story of their food.

My staff and I shared the Nourish curriculum at a recent After School Professional Development Institute at California State University, Chico. I had initially taught this curriculum at a rural middle school to 400 students during the school day. While Nourish works great as an add-on or an elective in the regular school day, the curriculum is equally well suited to after-school programs. After-school educators can spend more unstructured time pursuing activities and tastings that interest their students.

My goal for the 90 minutes was to give the attendees all they needed to go home and teach the lessons to their students, taking the “fear” out of trying something new. We gave each attendee a binder with the Nourish: Food + Community DVD, copies of handouts, and a copy of a local magazine that prints a seasonal specialties chart for creating the seasonal wheels in Activity 2.

We compared strawberries purchased from a local farm vs. strawberries purchased from the grocery store. Each participant created their own seasonal wheel with pens and colorful markers. We had them on their feet for a “speed dating” game to conduct the Food Traditions interviews for Activity 3. We also discussed ways that they could personalize the lessons.

Once you show the Nourish video, the initiative sells itself. Even my staff didn’t fully share my enthusiasm until they watched the 26-minute Nourish DVD. My staff consists of students from Chico State who are Nutrition and Kinesiology majors. We truly had a great time sharing this wonderful curriculum and supporting videos.

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