We are so excited to announce our partnership with the Kiwanis Early Riser Club of Yuba City. This partnership will allow us to provide six special education classroom teachers with mobile kitchens to help with integrating important life skills into their daily curriculum. Some of these skills include; making a shopping list, budgeting, shopping for food, and cooking, which are all important skills for independent living. This project is timely as there are over 2,500 special education students currently enrolled in school districts in Sutter County school and data show that obesity rates for children with disabilities are 38% higher than those of their non-disabled peers (CDC, 2018).
Prior to the receiving a mobile kitchen, teachers will be trained on the newly developed Learn it, Grow it, Taste it! curriculum to ensure confidence in lesson delivery. This curriculum was designed to be implemented in special education classrooms, special day classrooms, and community sites serving individuals with physical and intellectual disabilities. The most important goal of this curriculum is to help learners become enthusiastic about nutrition, cooking, gardening and physical activity, and to make sure that all individuals, including those with a disability, have equal opportunities to lead a healthy lifestyle. There are 11 lessons in the curriculum and each lesson has a cooking demonstration and/or an interactive classroom activity. Activities in this curriculum aim to educate and actively engage learners in food preparation, food safety, nutrition, gardening, mental wellness, money management, and physical activity and much more which will contribute to their lifelong health and wellness.
During the 2019-2020 school year, teachers will implement the Learn it, Grow it, Taste it! curriculum in their classroom with the support of the CalFresh Healthy Living, UC program. Data will be collected prior to the intervention and after the intervention to determine overall effectiveness and feasibility of program implementation. The intended change outcomes for this project include; increased transfer of knowledge and information, increased physical activity, increased ability to identify vegetables, positive youth development, increased cooking knowledge and skills, improved dietary behaviors, decreased obesity and/or improvements in overweight to normal weight, and increased food and healthy literacy.
Special thank you to the Kiwanis Early Riser Club of Yuba City for their GOLD LEVEL Sponsorship!!