“Lessons in the open air” with the “GemüseAckerdemie” – start of the field season in Bamberg

UNDER THE SLOGAN “FOR A GENERATION THAT KNOWS WHAT IT EATS”, THE STUDENTS OF THE BAMBERG PILL EMERGENCY SECONDARY SCHOOL BECOME SICK, BECAUSE THE SCHOOL HAS PARTICIPATED SINCE LAST YEAR IN THE “VEGETABLE ACHERDEMIA”. IN THIS MULTI-AWARD WINNING EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM SUPPORTED BY AOK BAYERN, STUDENTS PLANT, CARE AND HARVEST THEIR VEGETABLES ON THE SCHOOL CAMPUS. MINISTER OF STATE MELANIE HUML CELEBRATES THIS COMMITMENT TO HEALTHY NUTRITION.

There is a lot of hustle and bustle in the courtyard of the Redeemer secondary school in Bamberg: children with shovels, watering cans and tomato sticks run past in the direction of the school garden, because today the second planting of the GemüseAckerdemie takes place. Kohlrabi, lettuce and radishes have already been planted in April. Under the expert guidance of the Acker e. V., the students of the German class with the class teachers Judith Sander and Annalisa Cappelletti are planting tomatoes, courgettes, cucumbers and pumpkins in the beds that are still free today; everyone seems appreciative of the practice-oriented change from the classroom. As planting holes are diligently dug, headmaster Eugen Kügler describes the effect of the programme, which is already being implemented in the school in the second year: “Gardening brings everyone closer together, students are more attentive to each other and to their surroundings and in the end proud of their common harvest.”

The fields of the GemüseAckerdemie are an important area for students to experience nature and a place for physical exercise.
movement and social interaction. Growing and caring for up to 30 types of vegetables, children, young people and their teachers are supported by the GemüseAckerdemie team, as part of various plantings as well as workshops and training courses on site and digitally. Extensive educational materials provide suggestions for expanding teaching topics, such as avoiding food waste or diversity of species and varieties. The aim of the year-round educational program of the “Gemüse Ackerdemie” is to increase the appreciation of food and healthy nutrition among children and young people and to raise their awareness of sustainability and climate protection.

Minister of State Melanie Huml welcomes the implementation of the program in the school and is very enthusiastic about the motivation behind the
The students are present at the plow. As a physician and mother of two, she knows the importance of healthy nutrition,
“Lots of fresh vegetables and fruit, preferably directly from the region, are a must on the menu. However, it is not always
easy to make a balanced diet attractive to children. Educational programs like the GemüseAckerdemie are of great help.

In a playful way, the children become little experts in nutrition and also pass on their knowledge to the families. Also, be careful,
A sense of ownership and collaboration is encouraged: a great project.”

The program is funded by AOK Bayern in about 150 schools in Bavaria. Also Klaus Knorr, Managing Director AOK Bamberg is
in the field today, “We support the vegetable garden because the children here learn in a very practical way about healthy eating
learn, exercise outdoors, and strengthen important social skills at the same time!”

The growing interest in the transfer of practical knowledge and also the urgency of the underlying social problems.
The challenges are also reflected in the many inquiries from interested educators, confirms the regional coordinator of Acker e. v,
Henrike Hellmann. A look at the annual impact report shows that the program is not only growing, but also having an impact. 62
percent of students eat vegetables after participating that they did not like before and even more than 85% develop more
Appreciation for vegetables and food.

Meanwhile, the tomato and cucumber are already in the ground, and a student explains to the guests the importance of mulch in the ground.
beds, then Robert exclaims excitedly from the front row of beds, “A radish!” and he puts it in his mouth in the next second,
while his companions are already there and eagerly awaiting the first harvest of the year.

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