Transformation through Outdoor Education

Current $1220
Goal $1500
We want our students to develop healthy habits, and we want to raise money for our school garden and outdoor education initiative.
For questions or in-kind donations, contact the project leader HERE

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Hurry! Fundraising Ends:

11 / 20 / 15
School:
INTEGRITY ACADEMY AT CASA DE LUZ
City:
AUSTIN
District: AUSTIN ISD

Project Lead

Donation Goal

$1,500

Project Details

We want our students to develop healthy habits, and we want to raise money for our school garden and outdoor education initiative. Using the Integrity Academy newsletter, we will start a weekly health challenge for each student to bring knowledge of a new fruit, vegetable, or recipe to class for sharing within the whole school community. Using social media, email, word of mouth, and our network of volunteers, we will ask individuals in the community to donate to the Transformation through Outdoor Education fundraiser. ANYONE THAT DONATES WILL AUTOMATICALLY RECEIVE AN INTEGRITY ACADEMY COOKBOOK! These healthy snacks ideas are nutritious, delicious, and fun to make! HOW WILL WE USE THE FUNDS? 1. School Garden Improvements- Our garden is a prominent feature at the front of our school and visible to the entire community. On September 19, we organized a school-wide, parent-funded garden workday where we cleared the ground of rocks and mulch, tilled the soil, built a new fence, built a trellis tunnel, and started multiple classroom compost projects. On October 17, we organized another garden workday where we built cedar garden beds and planted lettuce, collared greens, broccoli, blackberries, an herb garden, and a wildflower garden. With the help of our students, parent volunteers, and many community partners, the school garden is already underway. We need additional funding to complete our vision which includes a small playscape, stage area, shelving and storage for our tools, and professional signage/bulletin board that educates readers about the garden. 2. Supplies for Gymnastics, Acroyoga, and Cooperative Games We still need funding for 50 ft Gibbon Slackline, 8 ft Gymnastics Balance Beam, 1 extra large gymnastics crash pad, 24 MMA Puzzle Piece mats for acroyoga and cooperative games, Rhino Skin dodgeballs, 20 rolls of colored duct tape for cooperative games ABOUT OUR SCHOOL Integrity Academy at Casa de Luz, Center for Integral Studies is a shining example of how to actively promote health among its school community. Our mission statement is to co-create an educational environment that nurtures the physical, social, emotional, spiritual, and intellectual development of our students with active participation from their families. In practice, this means that students are educated in a supportive, project-based environment with as much movement and physical activity as possible. Our mentors lead students in energizer activities every morning, and movement is incorporated into the math and reading curriculum. Every Monday, we have our opening ceremony where the entire school gathers in the courtyard for a community energizer that is led by different class each week. In addition, each class gets 30 minutes of specific movement (gymnastics, acroyoga, or cooperative games), AND 30 minutes of recess everyday. To support all this physical activity, all students and staff eat a 100% organic, whole-food, plant-based lunch provided by Casa de Luz. Healthy eating is not just an occasional event or promotion but an established practice. In our school garden, they learn about the entire process of where food comes, why some foods are better than others, and how all this effects the environment. In addition to having a 30 minute gardening class AND a 30 minute nutrition class once a week, many students spend the first 15 minutes in the morning playing in the school garden.

Partial Funding Plan

In the off chance that we do not meet our fundraising goal, Integrity Academy will continue to work in cooperation with our community partners and parent volunteers to provide support and supplies to our outdoor education initiative. Johnson’s Backyard Garden, EcoRise Youth Innovations, Sustainable Food Center, Compost Peddlers, Garden of the Ancients, Tia Ofilia, and RRR Farms have been incredibly supportive with seeds, sprouts, in-house education, presentations, classroom activities and volunteer hours. Integrity Academy will also continue to host on campus fundraisers. Past events include the Winter Faire, Spring Fling, and Community Garage Sale which all utilized student made crafts, parent volunteers, and donated resources to raise funds and engage our extended community.

Healthy Activities

Energizer during Monday Morning Circle – Level 2 students taught us 4 new handshakes that involve moving your body.
Move Your Body – Healthy School Announcement during Monday Morning Circle – We explained to students that there are 1440 minutes in a day. To stay healthy, we want to be active and move for at least 60 minutes everyday. Here you can see our students jumping and hopping to a beat created by our Level 3 musicians.
During our weekly school wide gardening class the youth brewed their very own batch of compost tea, an all natural liquid fertilizer that increase the fertility of soils. The equipment used, the production process, and the use of their compost tea made for a whole circle learning experience of how to enrich the nature around us.
During gardening class everyone planted broccoli, mustard greens, spinach, lettuce, and herbs in any and all available space around campus. Techniques for how to remove plant from pot and effectively plant were taught. After the sprouts got in the ground they were watered with compost tea made by the youth.
In our weekly nutrition class we made energy balls, a healthy snack made with dates/figs and almonds; rolled in either goji berry powder, hemp seeds, chia seeds, or shredded coconut. The kids devoured these raw vegan delicacies!
In nutrition class the youth were guided in making saurkraut, a traditional fermented vegetable which is served as part of their daily lunches. They worked their hand muscles as they pressed the cabbage and pushed it into glass jars. During the discussion they devoured raw cabbage, who said kids don’t like vegetables?
In nutrition class we made the nutritious snack “ants on a log” with celery, sunflower seed butter, and raisins. We had a discussion of the nutrition of each individual ingredient as well as what types of food they are.
The week before halloween we made raw and vegan pumpkin pies. These little treats superb ingredient list is pumpkin, persimmon, dates, pecans, cinnamon, and ginger. The kids loved them so much that the nutrition teacher got quite a few hugs and thanks for making such fun things with them. A staff member was inspired and said she’d make one for thanksgiving in replacement of a conventional, and not so healthy, pumpkin pie.
In gardening class the school did a nature scavenger hunt. They found as many things from nature in certain colors as they could. This showed them the diversity and beauty all around us.
In nutrition class, making art with vegetables was a huge hit. Ingenuity and creativity were inspired in the students while they saw that healthy foods are fun.
In nutrition class we made “fruit cakes” from 100% fresh fruits. The kids could not get over how beautiful they looked and how yummy they tasted.
In gardening class the students built brick garden beds for our winter garden beds. After this they filled them with soil and felt very proud about their hard work.
A garden workday brought staff, family, and friends together to build a beautiful garden space. By events such as this, Integrity Academy is working together to create a community for developing healthy minds and bodies.