November 2022: Native American Heritage Month
Dear Wisconsin Farm to School,

November is Native American Heritage Month. Favorite fall foods like squash, wild rice, and corn are native to the Americas. So many of the foods and agricultural practices that we think of when it comes to American cuisine and farming are thanks to the rich cultural traditions of local indigenous communities.

Below you’ll find resources, stories, workshops, and ideas to help you, your students, and your community honor and celebrate Native American Heritage Month. 

Erica Krug
Director of Youth Garden Support, Rooted/ Wisconsin School Garden Network

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Throughout the newsletter, you will see these icons after descriptions of resources, funding opportunities, and more to help you find information that is right for your program:
Announcements & Highlights

Register now for Wisconsin Chili Lunch!

Join schools, hospitals, early care sites, and more to celebrate all Wisconsin has to offer by using WI-grown products to make your Wisconsin Chili Lunch. The Wisconsin Chili Lunch is another great way to build strong communities, grow healthy eaters, support local farmers, and develop local food purchasing connections. 

When you register for the event you will receive a Wisconsin Chili Lunch guide to help you find local products and plan your Wisconsin Chili Lunch.

Learn more and register here!

Three Sisters Gardening Planting Beans and Squash

This video explores how to plant beans and squash with corn in mounds. "In addition to the foods we grow at our home, we are also part of Ohe∙láku (among the cornstalks), a co-operative of Oneida families growing corn together."
Watch the video here.
Joke of the Month
Click the green joke of the month button below to see the answer to this month's joke and to see Wisconsin School Garden Network's library of past jokes.
Have a farm to school joke to share? Email Rooted's Communications Director Renata Solan at
Joke of the Month: Who helped the butternut squash cross the road?
Tools & Resources

Kids Gardening and Crescent Garden: New Container Gardening Guide

The Elementary Educators’ Guide to Container Gardening teaches educators the basics of container gardening with kids, including container garden design, planting tips, and curriculum connections. View resource.

Make Cherokee Corn Husk Dolls

A traditional garden ecosystem widely used throughout the Americas is the Three Sisters, a planting of corn, squash and peppers. The Cherokee people make this beautiful corn husk doll while recounting the traditional story of the Three Sisters. Learn how to make the doll and hear the story.

Books that Honor Native American Food, Culture, and History

MomsRising's Education Fund has started a list of books for all ages that honor Native American stories, food, culture, and history. View resource.

Winter Gardening Activities for ECE Sites

Once the growing season is over, there are still many chores to be done and exciting ways to engage children in outdoor learning. Check out this resource for some of our favorite winter garden activities. View resource.
Webinars, Conferences, Events & Trainings
TODAY! Growing School Garden Summit Webinar Series: Sustainable Professional Development Framework
November 16, 2022 // 1:00 p.m. // Virtual
Learn about a replicable framework for a professional development series designed to help school garden educators build gardening confidence, foster collaboration among leaders, and strengthen garden programs for long-term success. 
Learn more and register here.

TODAY! Kids Gardening Community Chat: Winter Gardening
November 16, 2022 // 2:00 - 3:00 p.m. // Virtual
We're talking about all things winter gardening (in warm and cold climates) at our next Community Chat! Ask questions, share ideas, and connect with peers at this informal Zoom meetup. Learn more and register here.

Wisconsin LFPA Grant Program Kickoff Webinar
November 21, 2022 // 10:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. // Virtual
DATCP has signed a $2.94 million cooperative agreement with the USDA to create the Wisconsin Local Food Purchasing Agreement (LFPA) Program, which aims to strengthen local and regional food systems, support underserved, small Wisconsin farmers, and distribute fresh nutritious foods to underserved communities. DATCP will work collaboratively with producers, distributors, food security organizations, and tribal partners to provide program development, coordinate transportation and logistics, and procure food from local producers. Learn more and register here.

Rooted: Native American Heritage Month Workshop Series
Tuesdays in November // 5:30 p.m. // Virtual
Sundays in November // 1:00 p.m. // Virtual

November is Native American Heritage Month. Join in celebrating with Rooted's free virtual workshops offered by community members doing work related to food. You can watch workshops live or view the replay on Facebook at a time that is convenient for you. Follow Badger Rock Neighborhood Center and Rooted on Facebook for additional upcoming workshops and community member spotlights throughout the month. 
Learn more and watch here.

Celebration & Gratitude: Activities With Young Children
November 30, 2022 // 5:30 p.m. // Virtual
As the end of the year approaches, it’s time to celebrate all the ways we have grown. Join Denver Urban Gardens for this webinar for activities, ideas, and ways to express your gratitude and deepen your roots! Learn more and register here.

Funding Opportunities
Kids Gardening Youth Garden Grant
Deadline: December 2, 2022 
In early 2023, fifty organizations will be awarded $500 in funding and a collection of gardening supplies for their youth garden program. 
Learn more here.

Applications Now Open for USDA Farm to School Grants
Deadline: January 6, 2022 at 10:59 p.m.
In early 2023, fifty organizations will be awarded $500 in funding and a collection of gardening supplies for their youth garden program. Learn more here.
Job Opportunities
Food Corps: Service Member (Garden and Nutrition Educator)
Deadline: Applications accepted on a rolling basis; apply by November 18, 2022 for an early decision
Applications now open! Located across U.S., as a FoodCorps service member, you’ll teach kids to grow, cook, and love the nourishing foods that celebrate their cultures and communities—and help schools serve more of those foods, too. Living stipend; health and benefits package. Learn more and apply here. 
News & Policy Updates

The Sioux Chef uses only native ingredients, but isn't 'cooking like it's 1491'

At the James Beard Award-winning restaurant Owamni in Minneapolis, diners order off a menu that's been "decolonized." All dishes are prepared in ways that reflect Native American food cultures, using ingredients indigenous to North America prior to colonization.

"We look at showcasing the amazing diversity and flavor profiles of all the different tribes across North America, all the different regions, and really celebrating that and cutting away colonial ingredients," Owamni co-founder Sean Sherman says. "We don't have things on our menu that have dairy, wheat flour, cane sugar, ... beef, pork or chicken." Read the article and listen to the story.

How Hawai‘i is Improving Its Farm to Early Care and Education Landscape with Its First Farm to ECE Coordinator

Learn how the Hawai'i Department of Health's (DOH) Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion Division (CDPHPD), in partnership with the Hawai'i Public Health Institute (HIPHI), is leveraging their state's SNAP-Ed funding in a new and unique way, using the funds to hire a part-time statewide Farm to Early Childhood Care and Education (ECE) Coordinator. Read the article.
What's Growing in Wisconsin?

Sandburg’s Three Sisters
by Sarah Ann Thomas, maestra de recursos bilingües/bilingual resource teacher
Sandburg Elementary School, Madison, WI
This spring at Sandburg Elementary on Madison’s east side, a green team of teachers, students and families rebuilt a school garden plot. We wanted to plant something connected to our curriculum, and manageable for a fall harvest, so we decided on a Three Sisters Garden composed of corn, squash and beans. Third grade students had learned about traditional Ho-Chunk diets and then participated in a Land Acknowledgement Ceremony in May. We were lucky enough to receive some heirloom Ho-Chunk corn from Bill Quackenbush, and decided to add the “cousin” sunflowers to the raised bed as well. Third to fifth grade students helped put together the new garden frame, fill it with compost and plant the corn and giant sunflowers. 

The plants took off, thanks to dutiful watering by dedicated parents who chose a week on Signup Genius to volunteer. Come June and knee-high corn, a few children helped plant the squash and beans. The giant sunflowers shot up, and we should have thinned them out early. Eager students had planted a few extras. :-) The sunflowers started to take over, and we took down several 16 footers too late. Some corn survived and soon enough the kids were back in school.

In September, new third graders helped harvest the sunflower seeds to roast and flowerettes to make tea. Children tried the tea and snacked on roasted seeds, then took seed packets home to prepare if they wanted. They loved being outdoors and the sensory aspect of the harvest.

Thanks to Bill Quackenbush, who supplemented our corn supply, and former Sandburg mother, Genoveva Gonzalez, who did a thorough cooking demonstration lesson in Spanish, second and third grade dual immersion (DLI) students were able to make fresh corn tortillas. STudents harvested the corn and removed the kernels. Ms. Genoveva taught them about the process of nixtamalization, then pressed their own tortilla dough into tortillas. We then had a harvest party, just in time for Hispanic Heritage Month!

Many Latino students personally connected to the lessons about corn, and the first unit in all the new Kindergarten to 5th grade DLI Benchmark Literacy curriculum centers on life science. In fifth grade, the theme is actually corn, so those students also enjoyed seeing the fruits of our harvest. We plan on separating the sunflowers next spring, and have saved seeds to continue this garden and curriculum connection in 2023.
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Growing Together: Wisconsin's Farm to School/ECE and School Garden Newsletter is a collaboration of Rooted and Wisconsin School Garden Network. Growing Together is published and distributed by Rooted.

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