Smart School Lunch promotes MyPlate in the lunchroom. This site is a tribute to the amazing food service staff all across the nation working to promote healthy eating choices for children of all ages.

School Library Book Collections Funded

From our friends at GrantStation…

School Library Book Collections Funded
Laura Bush Foundation for America’s Libraries
The mission of the Laura Bush Foundation for America’s Libraries is to help school libraries encourage and foster a love of reading, support student learning, and make books and reading materials available to students who otherwise would not have access to them. Grants of up to $7,000 are available to update, extend, and diversify the book collections of school libraries throughout the United States, the American territories, and Department of Defense schools in other countries. Only schools where a minimum of 85% of the student body qualifies for the federal Free or Reduced Lunch Program are eligible to apply. Funds are provided solely for books, e-books, or magazines and serials in print, Braille, or audio form. Requests for staffing, shelving, furniture, equipment, software, videos, classroom book sets, or exams are not considered. All grants are made to individual schools rather than to school districts, foundations, or other entities. The application deadline is December 15, 2014. Online application information is available on the Foundation’s website.

 

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KidsGardening.org: Youth Garden Grants

From our friends at GrantStation

Child-Centered Garden Programs Supported
KidsGardening.org: Youth Garden Grants
KidsGardening.org, a resource of the National Gardening Association (NGA), awards Youth Garden Grants to schools and community organizations throughout the U.S. with child-centered garden programs. Applicant schools and organizations must plan to garden with at least 15 children between the ages of 3 and 18. Twenty programs will receive a $500 gift certificate to the Gardening with Kids online store. Each winning program will also receive a tool package from Ames, plant starts from Bonnie Plants, and seed donations. The top ten winners will receive a raised bed from New England Arbors. The selection of winners is based on the demonstrated relationship between the garden program and education related to the environment, health and nutrition issues, character education, and entrepreneurship in the United States. The application deadline is December 5, 2014. Application guidelines and forms are available on the NGA website at KidsGardening.org.

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Family Literacy Programs Funded

From our friends at GrantStation

Family Literacy Programs Funded
Wish You Well Foundation
The Wish You Well Foundation provides private funds to nonprofit organizations that promote family literacy in the United States. The focus of the Foundation is on the development and expansion of new and existing literacy and educational programs. Grants generally range up to $10,000. Requests may be submitted at any time and are reviewed four times per year. Visit the Foundation’s website to download the Donation Request Form.

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K-12 STEM Projects Supported

From our friends at GrantStation

K-12 STEM Projects Supported
Westinghouse N-Vision a Brighter Future Grant Program
The Westinghouse N-Vision a Brighter Future Grant Program provides support to U.S. K-12 teachers and schools who want their students to learn more about STEM through creative hands-on projects. Projects that involve students directly, and that incorporate community resources and utilize interdisciplinary or team-teaching strategies are given priority. Three schools will be awarded $1,000 to complete their projects, and another $2,000 will be granted to each of these school’s science departments for their needs. The application deadline is November 14, 2014. Visit the Westinghouse website to download the application guidelines.

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The Cafeteria is the Biggest Classroom in the School

A good reminder from the USDA blog

The following guest blog is part of our Cafeteria Stories series, highlighting the efforts of hard working school nutrition professionals who are dedicated to making the healthy choice the easy choice at schools across the country.  We thank them for sharing their stories!

By Linda Mailhot, Head Cook, Mount Desert Elementary School in Northeast Harbor Maine on September 24, 2014

Mount Desert Elementary School (MDES) is a small school with a big vision, located on Mount Desert Island off the coast of Maine. Here we strive to promote a healthy lifestyle for our students through physical activity and nutrition education.

The cafeteria is the biggest classroom in the school where students are taught to make healthy choices for themselves beginning in kindergarten. Students progress each day through a fruit-and-vegetable bar and an entrée station. Along this route they choose the nutritious and appealing foods they need to build a balanced meal according to the new school meal standards issued by USDA. Many of our entrée offerings are multinational, which is a great way to introduce students to nutritional foods from a variety of cultures. By empowering students in the cafeteria, they learn to make healthy choices for life.

Farm to School is a large part of our program, for this reason we utilize foods from local farms and Maine’s largest farm, the ocean. We have served lobster rolls, locally caught haddock and shark. We love to prepare foods the students have harvested from local farms and our school garden and have found that our students are invested in the school’s foodservice program. Since 2007 we have had a Culinary Arts Club, where students help in the kitchen before school, at break time and after lunch.

All students receive 90 minutes of physical education each week, have access to a variety of sports programs, and can join a walking club.  Grades K-5 participate in yoga sessions and incorporate mindful movement throughout morning meetings, classroom transitions and during academic lessons.

These collective efforts resulted in MDES being the very first school in Maine to receive the HealthierUS School Challenge Gold Medal of Distinction. Students and staff are very proud of the recognition and gave a standing ovation during the award ceremony.

At MDES we are excited to be involved in our students’ journey to a healthier lifestyle. As head cook, I’m happy to share one of the students’ favorite dishes:

Ham Jambalaya (100 servings)
This recipe was the runner-up of the rice bowl category in the USA Rice Federation’s Healthy Brown Rice on the Menu Contest!

  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 3 cups chopped onion
  • 3 QT chopped sweet green peppers
  • 3 QT chopped sweet red peppers
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 7 5/8 lb chopped deli ham
  • 11 1/8 pound brown rice
  • 1 Tbsp poultry seasoning
  • 1 Tbsp salt
  • 2 10-ounce cans diced red tomatoes
  • 1 ¾ QT water
  • Add water as needed

Heat oil in a Dutch oven or heavy large saucepan; add onions, bell peppers, and garlic. Cook stirring occasionally until lightly browned. Add ham and rice; cook and stir until rice is well coated with oil. Add poultry seasoning, salt, tomatoes and water. Cover and simmer until rice is tender and liquid absorbed, about 20-25 min. Add water as needed and cook as you would risotto. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper as needed. Hot peppers sauce can be used to spice it up.

- See more at: http://blogs.usda.gov/2014/09/24/the-cafeteria-is-the-biggest-classroom-in-the-school/#sthash.LA6fvDCl.dpuf

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Funding Opportunities for Fuel Up to Play 60

Another good opportunity…

Fuel Up to Play 60
Funding Opportunities for Fuel Up to Play 60 are available to help schools make healthy changes!

Fuel Up to Play 60, the in-school nutrition and physical activity program from National Dairy Council, local Dairy Councils, and the National Football League, in collaboration with United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), is helping to make wellness part of the game plan in nearly 73,000 schools across the country. Funding opportunities for Fuel Up to Play 60 are available to K-12 schools enrolled in Fuel Up to Play 60. The competitive, nationwide funding program is designed to support schools that implement Plays from the 2014-2015 edition of the Fuel Up to Play 60 Playbook. Whether you’re just starting out with Fuel Up to Play 60 or looking to expand and extend an initiative that’s already in motion, funding opportunities from Fuel Up to Play 60 can help. These funding opportunities for Fuel Up to Play 60 are competitive — Funds are awarded based on the quality of the application, the suitability of the specific request, and past funding received from Fuel Up to Play 60. To enroll your school or to download a step-by-step application worksheet and apply for funding, visit FuelUpToPlay60.com. The deadline is November 5, 2014.

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Whole Kids Foundation: School Garden Grant Program

Looks like a great opportunity…

Whole Kids Foundation: School Garden Grant Program

Whole Kids Foundation is dedicated to supporting schools and inspiring families to improve children’s nutrition and wellness.The Foundation’s School Garden Grant Program provides support for edible gardens at schools serving any grade K-12. These grants of $2,000 are awarded to schools and nonprofit organizations working at schools in the U.S. and Canada. Consideration is given to new or existing garden projects at any stage of development – planning, construction, or operation, that help children engage with fresh fruits and vegetables. Applications may be submitted from September 1 through October 31, 2014. Visit the Foundation’s website to complete the online application.

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Become a Breakfast Hero: 2014-2015 School Grants for Healthy Kids

We wanted to share this great opportunity from Action for Healthy Kids – the deadline is the end of September…

Through partners CSX Transportation, Kellogg Company, Kellogg’s Company Fund, and the Walmart Foundation, Action for Healthy Kids is pleased to release its School Grants for Healthy Kids opportunities for the 2014-2015 school year.  Around 1,000 schools will be awarded funds ranging from $500 to $5,000 to support school breakfast and physical activity programs. Funded schools will also receive expertise and people power to help implement a successful project that leads to sustainable change.

Award amounts will be based on building enrollment, project type, potential impact, and a school’s ability to mobilize parents and students around school wellness initiatives.

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School Gardens Supported in the U.S. and Canada

Thanks to GrantStation for the heads up…

School Gardens Supported in the U.S. and Canada
Whole Kids Foundation: School Garden Grant Program
Whole Kids Foundation is dedicated to supporting schools and inspiring families to improve children’s nutrition and wellness.The Foundation’s School Garden Grant Program provides support for edible gardens at schools serving any grade K-12. These grants of $2,000 are awarded to schools and nonprofit organizations working at schools in the U.S. and Canada. Consideration is given to new or existing garden projects at any stage of development – planning, construction, or operation, that help children engage with fresh fruits and vegetables. Applications may be submitted from September 1 through October 31, 2014. Visit the Foundation’s website to complete the online application.

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Support for Technology Programs for Teens

Thanks to GrantStation for the heads up…

Support for Technology Programs for Teens
Best Buy Foundation: National Partnership
The Best Buy Foundation is dedicated to providing underserved teens with access to technology to build 21st century skills and bridge the digital divide. The Foundation’s National Partnership program supports nonprofit organizations that create hands-on learning opportunities for underserved teens to engage them in learning, experimenting, and interacting with the latest technologies. The overall goal is to provide youth with access to new technologies and help them become interested and fluent in digital learning while developing skills to better prepare them for future education and career success. National organizations with a demonstrated track record for building skill proficiency in technology through out-of-school time programs are invited to apply. The application deadline is November 1, 2014. Visit the Best Buy website to review the Request for Proposals.

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