I decided to change my blog today because I read about a Montessori school in Cincinnati that will be opening as a organic whole food plant based school. They will grow food in season, teach meditation and yoga and traditional curriculum. I find this concept refreshing, exciting and surprising. Cincinnati, Ohio just doesn't seem like it would be an awakened community. But, it appears I would be wrong. I'm just disappointed I don't live there so that I could apply to be on staff.
Hearing the news of this new Montessori school in Cincinnati, I am reminded of Suzy Amis Cameron actress and environmental activist (to just name two of her many titles) who opened MUSE a private school in California which became the first organic plant based school in the country in 2015. Hear more about her journey at: http://www.richroll.com/podcast/suzy-amis-cameron/ When you hear her story you will see this was a labor of love which included much hard work and time educating a community on the benefits of a plant based lifestyle.
The reason I am so excited about both of these schools appears to be obvious, but let me delve in a bit deeper. Public School lunch is a disgrace which includes requiring children to drink white or chocolate milk. Many schools have soda machines and fast food sold on campus. The idea that private schools are opening up and helping children and their parents learn about the affects of food and compassion just blows me away. Many years ago, I worked as a preschool teacher in a church. This was an awesome opportunity. Being in a church we taught spirituality and my class of three year olds did meditation after playground time. As a school dedicated to a curriculum of hands on learning and allowing children to think for themselves we opened up minds and free thinking for these bright, energetic, thoughtful human beings. I loved the concept of allowing a child to imagine and put into practice their own thoughts and actions. We did not have ditto sheets and did not tell a child what color something "should be" we allowed them to create. This was wonderful, because, the sad fact is we have become a society that doesn't appreciate and encourage independent thinkers. We expect everyone to color in the lines, with the right shade of macaroni and cheese orange and then proudly hang up these masterpieces that the child barely participated in. I believe, raising our children to think for themselves and to color outside the lines is a wonderful thing. Color a turkey purple - why not? What is the harm? And while we're at it, let's teach these kids the benefits of good nutrition. http://schoolfoodsummit.com/resources/
Shouldn't teaching good health, compassion, independent thinking, creativity and kindness for ourselves and others be what the next generation learns? Please, do not misunderstand me, I am a believer in public education and I deeply appreciate the many teachers that have walked the halls of my schools and my children's schools. These are dedicated professionals that work hard and make a difference every day. What I am asking is....do we need to rethink the overall school philosophy? And above all - Can we start with the foods we are serving and offering in our schools? Isn't it time for our children and ourselves to be healthy in mind, body and spirit.
Wishing you Grace, Peace & Healthy Living,