Foust students learn about agriculture, healthy eating

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Mar. 25—Wednesday afternoons at Foust Elementary School have been busy this month as students learn more about healthy eating and agriculture.

Cheryl Burks-McCarthy, a program assistant with the University of Kentucky’s Daviess County Extension Office, said the after-school time was for her to talk to students about increasing their consumption of fruits and vegetables.

“We’ve been able to do that with different snacks I’ve brought in,” she said.

Burks-McCarthy said some of the snacks the students had were quesadillas, a charcuterie board and trail mix, and some of the food used to create the snacks have come from local farmers.

“We want to let them know that their food doesn’t just come from the grocery store,” she said. “We’ve talked about soil, root vegetables, what grows under the ground, what grows on top of the ground.”

The program also focuses on MyPlate, an initiative run by the US Department of Agriculture to teach students about healthy eating and the food pyramid.

On Wednesday, the students in the program invited their families to join them for a farm-to-table meal at the school.

“Any time we can have the families come in and be with their kids, we want to,” Burks-McCarthy said. “If we can sit down for a few minutes, have a meal and do a group project, that’s wonderful.”

Burks-McCarthy said whenever she had an activity or food for the students, they would jump on it.

“At this age they’re like sponges, they take all of it in,” she said. “They have loved trying new foods.”

Second-graders ZNylah Wilhite and Unity Carter-Swanagan said they have learned more about washing their hands and eating fruits and vegetables.

“You don’t get sick if you wash your hands,” Carter-Swanagan said. “And you’ll be healthy.”

Wilhite said eating fruits and vegetables has its perks.

“You’ll be able to get strong and more talented and healthy,” she said.

Carter-Swanagan said she enjoyed being able to plant seeds in a cup during the program and watch them grow.