Catholic Schools Week: Queen of Angels students learn healthy eating, sustainability
By Lori Padilla
NORTH HUNTINGDON – The Ecology Club at Queen of Angels Catholic School, North Huntingdon, is preparing students for healthier and more sustainable lives.
Through a program developed by the Pennsylvania Department of Education and Penn State, students are learning about local food systems and how they impact their lives.
“We are developing our environmental education program at Queen of Angels,” said teacher Christine Salvi. “One of our missions is to teach the kids about how our food is grown and produced, sustainability and stewardship.
At the beginning of the school year, students were tasked with caring for three hens in a coop. They have produced 12 dozen eggs, according to Salvi.
Caring for the chickens led to the students learning about anatomy.
“It was interesting to find out that chickens have the closest relationship to the T-Rex,” said club member James McHugh.
The students marked the beginning of the school year with the “Harvest of the Month initiative,” focusing on a different vegetable each month.
“With the eggs, we were able to make omelets and scrambled eggs with all the fixings for the fourth grade,” said club member Natalie Wassell.
Through a grant, the school was able to purchase a Charlie Cart, a “kitchen on wheels.” Students are learning how to use a hot plate, toaster oven, mixer, griddle and blender. The cart also has a sink for clean-up after instructional time with younger students.
“I really hope the students gather an understanding of sustainability – , support local, eat local, skill in cooking safely and eating better for themselves,” Salvi said.