Family and community engagement both contribute to building impactful farm to ECE programs. Engaging families not only creates excitement and investment into farm to ECE, but connects the early learning and home environments to reinforce children’s learning. Working with the community can lead to valuable opportunities to connect others to your program through invitations for field trips, volunteering, and donations. Newsletters, building a website, sharing your story with the local news, and creating a success story are wonderful ways to promote your program.
Engaging in activities that reflect the families of the children you work with can help make farm to ECE relatable and can be a powerful tool to teach children about their culture or share their culture with others. Many curriculums listed on the Food, Nutrition, and Agriculture Education page contain family engagement components such as parent newsletters and take home activities. Below are resources to help bring your families and community into the classroom and meet the needs of the families you serve.
Cultural Adaptations and Racial Equity
- Racial and Social Equity Assessment Tool for Farm to School Programs and Policy by the National Farm to School Network
- Racial Equity Toolkit by the Seattle Race and Social Justice Initiative
- Celebrating Cultural Diversity with Farm to Early Care and Education National Farm to School Network’s webinar featuring practitioners sharing their approach to incorporating culturally relevant curriculum, resources and programming into farm to ECE
- Equity, Inclusion, and Anti-Bias Resources Growing Minds’ resources that can be used to teach children about race, racism, diversity, and inclusion
- Multicultural Collection of Farm to ECE Books The Food Trust’s multicultural book collection of books featuring underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, including many bilingual and Spanish books
- Social Justice Standards a set of anchor standards and age-appropriate learning outcomes divided into four domains. Intended for K-12 but can be adapted
Family and Community Engagement
- Community Groundworks’ Family Engagement Guide Includes information on how to engage families in Farm to ECE
- Tips for Building Media Relationships and Building a Great Story by the National Farm to School Network
- What’s Cookin’? Hosting a Healthy Family Cooking Event This thirty minute webinar shares tips and tools for hosting a successful family cooking event at your site