Education and Outreach Programs on the Farm
Our aim is to create and participate in educational and practical programs on the farm and in the community to address our educational mission.
Children ages 6-11 can sign up for one week or all six weeks. Adventures along our riverbank, forest, and farm fields will broaden their world and nurture their appreciation for the ecosystems of Vermont and develop a stronger sense of appreciation for farm fresh food.
This 4-week culinary program for middle-school students ages 11–14 takes a well-rounded approach to teaching children the culinary skills necessary to develop and expand their love of cooking. Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced level classes offered in the spring of 2018.
Our school programming is for students grades K-12, differentiated according to grade level and abilities. We offer a variety of topical, specific lessons, such as organic agriculture and climate change, soil science, and nature in agriculture, in order to deepen understanding and provide direct instruction.
Little Farmers is a drop-in toddler program that runs every Tuesday from 10am-11am in the fall. Parents and their children (ages 2-5) will investigate bugs, plants, chickens, and other areas of the farm together with our instructors. No pre-registration required; just drop in and have some fun! $5 per child.
Designed for students ages 6-11 years old, our Homeschool Farm Science program utilizes the farm as its primary educational tool, covering topics such as harvesting, insects, organic agriculture, physics, and seed saving.
Hosted at 5:15 pm on the first Thursday of every month during the season, this FREE tour is designed to help folks see our growing practices up close and to learn specifically about organic agriculture and the benefit it has to our environmental health.
Each year, we welcome students to the farm from schools all over the Upper Valley and Vermont.
From May through October, Cedar Circle Farm & Education Center has a self-guided tour so that visitors can learn more about organic agriculture and sustainable farming systems while strolling about the farm with the kids and a cup of coffee or tea from the Hello Café. The tour takes you through our greenhouses, fields and gardens, and gives you an overview of our farming systems, marketing techniques, education programs, and alternative energy strategies.
Education and Outreach Programs in the Community
Thetford Elementary School Gardens
Since 2007, Cedar Circle Farm has helped the Thetford Elementary School integrate garden-derived and local foods into its cafeteria. Each spring K-2 schoolchildren start seeds and plant their gardens and then harvest in the fall. The students visit the farm for curriculum-related field trips each spring and fall. Inspired by their success with the school garden program in 2011 the school added seven “School Lunch Beds” which are grown to order from the food service staff and a custom on-site composting facility, completing the food cycle. The students are now involved in what we call the Food Loop: from seed to lunch to soil. Read more about Thetford Elementary School in our, Farm Voices.
Farmer Correspondence Program
Cedar Circle Farm & Education Center is a proud participant in this free program that matches classrooms with farmers based on interests and grade levels. As farmer pen pals, farm staff corresponds with students during the winter and spring educating students about life and work on the farm. Often, these relations build in to an exciting farm field trip. To get your school involved, contact the NOFA-VT Farm To Community Mentor Program.
Programs To Increase Access to Healthy Organic Fresh Food
NOFA-VT’s Farm Share Program
NOFA-VT, the Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont, Farm Share Program assists low-income Vermonters in obtaining farm fresh foods. Farm Share participants receive partially subsidized shares from Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farms. Each year, the Farm Share Program assists over 1,400 individuals participating in CSA programs, including an increasing number of families local to Cedar Circle Farm. Learn more about participating in the Farm Share Program at Cedar Circle Farm. Any one can donate to the program.
EBT (Electronic Balance Transfer) Cards
Our farmstand accepts EBT cards as payment for all farm fresh produce, groceries, vegetable seedlings, and seeds. EBT cards replaced the federal food stamp program, now called SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program). Every state has a food stamp and cash assistance program, in Vermont it referred to as 3SquaresVT and is intended to assist families in meeting a food budget that will put three square meals a day on your table. To inquire about EBT in NH, contact New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services.
Vermont Farm to Family Program
The Vermont Farm to Family Program allows qualifying families to receive coupons for fresh foods, redeemable at participating farmers’ markets. The program states two goals: to get nutritionally at-risk people to eat more fresh fruits and vegetables; and to expand the use of farmers’ markets.
Willing Hands recovers food, primarily fruits and vegetables, that would have otherwise been wasted from more than 25 food donors and delivers to at least 55 organizations in the Upper Valley of VT and NH every week. Learn more about how our staff works with Willing Hands community volunteers to prepare, plant, maintain, and harvest a 1 acre plot of fresh nutritious food.
After harvest we sort and grade our produce donating tons of unmarketable vegetables each year to Salvation Farms whose mission is to build increased resilience in Vermont’s food system through agricultural surplus management.