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Journal Assignment

Page history last edited by Ali Abbors 15 years, 8 months ago

fall 2008

Schedule  *  Assignments and Grading  *  Journal  *  Study Guide  *  Daily Blog  *  Recipes and Food Preservation  *  Food News!  *  Events


Garden Journal

Please bring to class every day.


In general, here’s what we’d like to see each week:


  • One almanac entry for Tuesday and one for Thursday (You are welcome to take time at the end of class to do this, or you can reflect on the day outside of class, if you wish. Check out the Daily Blog to jog your memory.)

AND one of the following, to do over the weekend:

  • A news story summary and reaction


  • Local food journal entry


Journal check-ins:

We’ll check in on your journal progress weekly. We’ll collect the journals to read them twice during the term, once on October 21 and again on November 20, returning them to you on the following Tuesdays. For those two weekends, don’t worry about doing a news story or local food entry. You can take your journals home with you to keep the day of our Harvest Feast, November 25.


Garden Almanac

This is your place to take notes during our in-class discussions and panels, jot down observations, and keep track of what we’re planting and what you’re learning. With so many Urban Farmers, it is difficult for all of us to know what’s going on in all of our beds all the time. The skills you’re learning here can follow you throughout your lifetime, if you want them to. We hope this Almanac will give you the opportunity to record the details that are the most meaningful for you and potentially recreate them in your own garden someday. In general, we’d like you to record the following:

-    What did we plant?

-    What did we harvest?

-    What did we learn about _____ (compost, soil amendments, farming methods, plant identification, seasonality of produce, cooking, canning, etc.)?


We encourage you to refer to the map provided in the journal or to draw your own pictures, write poetry, whatever inspires you!


News Story Summary and Reaction

See some examples of news stories here.

Stories about agriculture, gardening and food security appear in local and national news sources every day. These stories can help us contextualize the work we are doing on the Urban Farm as part of a larger, global movement working to address issues of sustainability, self-reliance, cultural preservation and environmental justice.


Please find one news story (print, television, internet, etc.) related to the themes of this class. Alternatively, feel free to look up and write about other urban farming projects that interest you, such as the Edible Schoolyard in Berkeley, CA. Please take a paragraph or two to briefly describe the main points of the article and your reaction. Remember to site your source (name of publication, author, date, etc.) Look at news publications such as the New York Times online, Grist, or NPR, or use the Google news search to look up these terms, to start with: food security, farm to school, local food, Slow Food, organic agriculture, Farm Bill, Green Revolution, food crisis, world hunger, school garden, urban agriculture, community garden, farmer’s market, community supported agriculture, etc.


Local Food Journal

Integrating local foods into your diet takes time and effort. This assignment is designed to help you start thinking about where your food comes from and if affordable local alternatives are available. Each week, please choose one food item that you eat on a regular basis. Find out where it comes from (in other words: where was it grown, processed, packaged?), what it costs and, if it is not local, where and at what price you might find a local alternative. You are not required to buy it, although we’d love to hear about it if you do. It is up to you to define what “local” means to you, and we expect that your definition might change—we’d like to hear your reasoning on this, too. This activity will also help you prepare for the Eat Local assignment due later in the term and, we hope, help you think about integrating more local foods into your everyday diet.


Some local food vendors: Eugene Farmer’s Markets (Saturday and Tuesday, 8th and Oak), Sundance Natural Foods, Red Barn Grocery, Cappella Market, Market of Choice, the Kiva, Holy Cow (on campus), Laughing Planet, Hideaway Bakery, Long’s Meats, etc. See Locally Grown directory for more.


We’ve provided a general template to help you make the most of this journal, but you are welcome to take more space or change things around if you want to.


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