Education Week Story About Connecting Students to the World Through Food Studies

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Article Title: "Connecting Students to the World Through Food Studies"

Date of Article: 04/22/2019

Article Author: Sarah K. Anderson


This winter, the 7th and 8th grade students at the Cottonwood School of Civics and Science explored the question: “What can we learn about the world by looking at our food?” These explorations allowed students to learn about globalization through all of the disciplines mentioned above, leaning heavily upon personal and local connections. Emily Conner, the 7th/8th grade humanities teacher (and creator of most of the activities below), pulled in guest speakers, books, and other resources to create an interdisciplinary unit that additionally incorporated language arts, technology, visual art, and career skills. Below are elements of the unit, any of which can be led in a classroom as a stand-alone activity.

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Author Bio:

Sarah K. Anderson spent most of her childhood exploring rivers and forests near her rural Vermont home- experiences which provided inspiration for a passion for nature and all things wild. After graduating with a degree in American Studies from Bard College in New York, Sarah served as an AmeriCorps volunteer for Metro Parks and Greenspaces in Portland, OR. Since then, she has worked as a crew leader at an educational farm in Vermont, a Teacher Naturalist in the California Redwoods and a Middle School Humanities teacher at The Key School in Annapolis, Maryland and 7/8th grade at The Cottonwood School of Civics and Science. Sarah received a Masters of Education from Antioch New England Graduate School, where she specialized in integrated and place-based education.


Sarah has written a book about Place-Based Learning and The Cottonwood School of Civics and Science, titled “Bringing School to Life: Place-based Education Across the Curriculum.” Learn more about the book here .

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