- Author: Elizabeth Lopez
UC CalFresh launched the new and improved Eating Smart, Being Active nutrition classes in Madera county. The first stop was Virginia Lee Rose Elementary! To reach parents, UC CalFresh partnered with the Parent Resource Center. Parent Resource Centers are found at seven elementary schools within Madera Unified School District. Their goal is to provide resources that will help parents with their children's education while also encouraging parents to become involved in their children's school.
With the help of Parent Resource Center staff, UC CalFresh was able to host a nutrition series for Virginia Lee Rose parents from March to April. Parents who participated, learned proper knife skills, how to make meals healthy and be physically active, and so much more!
While some had experience following a recipe, for others, this was their first time following a recipe and measuring out ingredients. The five parents who participated in the class series expressed that they enjoyed the experience and the information learned.
- Author: Evelyn Morales
Fresno and Madera Counties' UC CalFresh Nutrition Education Program has a long-standing partnership with the Fresno State Dietetic Internship Program. This blog post is part of our Intern Reflections Series.
When I first arrived at UCCE I observed a new teacher practice session in the conference room. Everyone pretended to be first graders as a new employee read a book and taught the MyPlate introduction. They gave her tips at the end of her lesson on ways to be more effective. I thought it was a great way to offer constructive criticism and ensure that new employees are getting the hang of things.
On Wednesday, I traveled with Tacu to Jobs and Beyond and observed a nutrition class and cooking demo. Tacu is an excellent presenter and I really enjoyed watching him teach! He did a great job of encouraging the class to participate and be active in what they were learning. At the end, he made a veggie quesadilla for everyone to try and it tasted great! I got to teach the PA lesson at the end.
On Thursday, I traveled with Evelyn and Ruth to Firebaugh to observe and help teach K-2nd grade classes. Evelyn is a great educator and makes learning so fun for the kids! I co-taught a kindergarten class with Ruth and we introduced the MyPlate to the kids and did a MyPlate puzzle activity where the kids got to actively participate in creating the MyPlate. It was a ton of fun. I also got to help with a lesson that used a very large MyPlate mat.
On Friday, I traveled to Jobs and Beyond again and observed Austin and Sergio teach a nutrition lesson and do a cooking demo of an apple chicken salad. I led the spice activity and it was such a blast having everyone guess what they thought the spices were! Later in the day I completed my Nutrition Corner poster.
My completed Nutrition Corner on Food Safety
This week has been very fun. I spent the whole day with Chris on Tuesday teaching nutrition classes at Viking Elementary. I led a few different activities including food bingo for the special ed class. In the middle of the lesson, a student found a beetle on the floor and it caused a scene. Turns out, the teacher is a master gardener and happened to have two Venus fly trap plants in the classroom. She kept the beetle to feed to the plant!
The venus fly trap plant!
Most of Wednesday was spent with Mishelle at Hamilton Elementary teaching pre-K up to 4th grade.
Teacher Mishelle talking to the kiddos about My Plate!
On Thursday I helped Nora and Yolanda at the Turkey Trot for Hamilton Elementary school. We passed out mango & mint infused water and had props on display to show students and parents how much sugar is in soda and other drinks. It was so much fun!
Ready to serve kids infused water!
The biggest thing that I've learned so far from UCCE is how easy and fun teaching children can be. The kids classes are such a blast and I really love how high energy they are. I often get nervous public speaking or doing education lessons, but I haven't been nervous with the kids at all.
I've also been surprised at how quickly children pick up and retain information. Chris and I went into a classroom that he had taught once the previous year. The children remembered almost everything with just a little prompting! I was so impressed.
Overall this has been a great two weeks going out to the community and teaching nutrition. I've been reminded how vital nutrition education is and why it is needed so badly in the community. Thanks UCCE for having me!
- Author: Evelyn Morales
Over the last two weeks at UC CalFresh Nutrition Education Program, I learned fun and innovative ways to provide nutrition education to children and adults. The UC CalFresh Nutrition Education Program helps families, adults, and children by teaching nutrition lessons at schools and community events. During my time interning at UC CalFresh, I had the opportunity to learn about the program through teaching children nutrition classes.
On my first day, I was introduced to the staff and was given a tour of the facility. I knew very little about UC CalFresh; so, it was good to learn about an organization that teaches nutrition education to the local community. I was told that I would be teaching the following day at Roeding Elementry school for youth lessons. I was a bit nervous because I had very little experience working with young children; but after watching the staff educator Nora teach Pre-K, kindergarten, and 5th-grade classes; I was able to get the groove of things and quickly picked up on some of her teaching strategies and classroom management techniques.
The following day I traveled to Bailey Elementary in Firebaugh to teach preschoolers about MyPlate and Potter the Otter. I was astonished by the students' ability to remember the MyPlate model and the key messages provided during the lesson. When reviewing MyPlate we helped the students associate certain foods with specific food groups. For example, we would point to the grains group and ask the students the color, the name of the group, foods found within the group, and the key message as to why it's are important. I was amazed by their knowledge of nutrition. Not only did they know the foods within the groups, they understood the key messages associated with the different food groups. Awesome!
For the second half of the lesson, I read the book Potter the Otter Goes to Market. This book talked about the importance of eating healthy with friends and family. The students loved the story and I made sure to engage the children by encouraging participation and answering questions about the book.
The following week I taught youh classes at many different sites in Fresno. I also participated in a Moringa project, where I created overnight oats and spiced morning oatmeal. These two breakfast entrees were infused with moringa and taste tested on my last day. I found the overnight oats recipe to be my favorite.
I also created a UC CalFresh Nutrition Corner poster board that emphasized the importance of whole grains and physical activity. The Nutrition Corner poster board will be used at a school site for nutrition outreach.
I would like to thank UC CalFresh Nutrition Program for this opportunity. I had not had much experience with children prior to this rotation so I felt that it was beneficial to me as a future registered dietitian. I had the opportunity to visit different school sites while teaching nutrition education to various age groups throughout the week. This rotation helped me to step out of my comfort zone and I truly felt that I was teaching the kids the importance of nutrition. I am grateful for this unique rotation and to be able to work with students in the classroom; it has made me more confident in working with this age group. This rotation has shown me the impact that community nutrition can make. Thank you!
- Author: Mishelle Petit
UC CalFresh joined Birney Elementary at their annual Fall Harvest Festival. Students enjoyed a night of fun with a bounce house, carnival games, and even a haunted house! Nutrition Educator, Mishelle Petit provided nutrition education to students and their parents along with a tasting of fruit infused water.
Take a look at the fun in the pictures below!
Students are reminded of the many ways they can be healthy this fall. These include eating a rainbow of colors, drinking water, getting plenty of sleep and being active every day!
The strawberry orange infused water was a huge hit on this warm day and also a great reminder to choose water.
Birney students playing the pumpkin ring toss game.
Thank you to the Birney staff for welcoming UC CalFresh at your fun-filled event!/span>
- Author: Hannah Lee
Easterby Elementary kindly invited UC CalFresh to join their Spring Carnival on May 12th this year! UC CalFresh Nutrition staff, Hannah and Maira, spent a sunny evening sharing nutrition education and physical activity with Easterby students and their parents. Take a look at the pictures below to get a glimpse of the fun!
Miss Strawberry is ready to share MyPlate!
UC CalFresh incorporated physical activity with a Tic-Tac-Toe toss, and had a station for students and their families to create healthy meals using MyPlates and food pictures.
Maira discusses the benefits of physical activity with an Easterby Tiger.
Thank you to everyone at Easterby for welcoming us to their campus and giving us a chance to share our work with the Easterby community!