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- January 1, 2005 - December 31, 2010
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impact statement impact
- • Formal and nonformal educators in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, now trained in Garden Mosaics informal science education model and resources, have the potential to reach hundreds of youth in underserved communities, addressing science literacy, awareness and stewardship of local environments, importance of local food accessibility to sustain well being, and value of community elders as resources for learning and as cultural mentors. Evaluation assessments included testimonials: • Appreciation of partnerships: “Met new people from across the city and other organizations.” • Subject matter interest: “The curriculum is meaty and engaging for adults and seemingly students. Lots of resources to support the program. I like how flexibly the materials were presented—not prescriptively.” • Use of curriculum: “The training was good. I liked that it made me realize that gardening is important and useful. The program gave me ideas and things I can work on with the children.” “I liked the hands on learning. Actually seeing how to incorporate the lessons around the community.” • Trained staff and volunteers of Campos Community Center and gardeners of Dias Y Flores Community Garden laid the foundation for a partnership between the two organizations, located a block apart. During summer 2008, Dias Y Flores gardeners worked with Garden Mosaic-trained staff from Campos to engage about 20 Campos summer camp youth, ages 6-12, in Garden Mosaics activities and investigations. Both organizations are committed to further developing and strengthening a collaborative Garden Mosaics program for neighborhood youth. • Trained staff from Abounding Grace Ministries/Generation Xcel have the skills and resources they were seeking to partner with schools and community youth groups to conduct garden-based programs for youth. Garden Mosaics resources have been integrated into programs, including: • Afterschool and day camp programming incorporated the Neighborhood Exploration science Investigation with participants, investigating green spaces and participating in trash pick-up as a service project (summer 2008); • Garden planting plans were established for fall 2008 and shared with a senior and social services center, allowing for intergenerational learning and sharing of plants and seeds. • Planned activities for spring 2009 include a cooking class with ingredients grown in the garden, nutrition workshop by CUCE-NYC, and other science activities. • A trained educator from the Bronx River Alliance, an organization involved with numerous river bank restoration and public and youth education projects, provided opportunities for Garden Mosaics science Investigations and activities to be disseminated more broadly to the public and the Alliance’s partner agencies. • Environmental educators from around the country and abroad reached through the North American Association of Environmental Education (NAAEE) workshop will expand the network of partners involved in the Garden Mosaics program. The resulting postings of data and stories will increase opportunities for collaboration and information sharing among groups in a diversity of settings, as well as add to the richness of the website for learning by other groups.
impact statement issue
- Educators do not have the training and resources needed to provide youth with informal science-based learning in urban agriculture and the environment. Because educators may have limited skills in teaching community horticulture, even though urban community gardens may be ideal laboratories for learning, urban youth rarely have opportunities for hands-on horticultural experiences. Urban youth often are not aware of where their food comes from or the importance of sustainable food systems, the scientific processes needed for food production, and how the quality of the environment impacts local gardening.
impact statement response
- CUCE-NYC developed and implemented a science-based program targeting educators and youth in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, using Garden Mosaics, a national, informal science education program model developed by CUCE-NYC, Cornell University, and national leadership team members. The project website is www.gardenmosaics.org. In June 2008, CUCE-NYC planned and conducted a full-day training program for 13 educators from five community organizations including a school. With the exception of one, all participating organizations were from the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Five participants identified as White, three as African American, three as Hispanic/Latino, one as Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, and one other; eight were female and four were male (one provided no response). The training program introduced participants to print and Internet-accessible program materials and familiarized them with the science and community exploration activities through hands-on practice. Participants also learned how to post data and stories on the Garden Mosaics website, as well as how to search the website for Garden Mosaics activities in the U.S. and other countries. In Fall 2008, CUCE-NYC educators planned and presented a workshop at the 2008 North American Association of Environmental Education Conference in Wichita, Kansas, to 15 attendees from five states (California, Wisconsin, Texas, Maryland, and Kentucky) and three other countries (Japan, China, and Taiwan). The purpose of this workshop was to familiarize environmental educators with Garden Mosaics as a program for science inquiry and intergenerational community service learning. Those in attendance were given an overview of the program, science investigations, and other activities, as well as the web resources. Ideas were also presented on forming community partnerships to implement a Garden Mosaics program.
impact statement summary
- Cornell University Cooperative Extension-New York City (CUCE-NYC) planned and developed a professional development and informal science education program that involves multicultural and intergenerational learning among educators, youth, and adult gardeners in community garden settings. The program also includes action projects, science investigations, citizen science data collection and reporting on national databases. The program focuses on plants and planting practices with an emphasis on food security, nutrition, and environmental sustainability.
Other private funding
- USDA/CSREES Federal Administration Extension Grants Program
- Abounding Grace Ministries/Generation Xcel; New York Partner (Abounding Grace Ministries/Generation Xcel)
- Bronx River Alliance; New York Partner (Bronx River Alliance)
- Brooks, Lorraine Researcher
- Campos Community Center; New York Partner (Campos Community Center)
- Dept. of Natural Resources, Cornell University; New York Partner (Dept. of Natural Resources, Cornell University)
- Dias Y Flores Community Garden; New York Partner (Dias Y Flores Community Garden)
- Ferenz, Gretchen S Researcher
- Krasny, Marianne Elizabeth Researcher
- Lambert, Veronique Theresa Researcher
- The Earth School; New York Partner (The Earth School)
- Tse, Caroline Researcher
- Applied Research
- Ferenz, Gretchen S Cornell Academic Staff