A Pre-Kindergarten - Grade 12 co-educational independent day school in Westchester, New York

AP Environmental Science Students Explore Sustainability with City Growers at Brooklyn Grange Farm

As part of learning about food security and sustainability, students in AP Environmental Science visited Brooklyn Grange's Long Island City Rooftop Farm. Brooklyn Grange is the leading rooftop farming and intensive green roofing business in the United States. The organization operates the world’s largest rooftop soil farm system and promotes sustainable urban living by building green spaces, hosting educational programming and events, and widening access to locally grown produce in New York City communities. The visit was hosted by City Growers, whose programs engage thousands of kids in farm-based learning each year through our hands-on farm workshops at Brooklyn Grange rooftop farms, summer camps, school garden residencies, after-school programs, summer internships, and ecology workshops.

At the farm, students learned that consuming food grown locally eliminates a few of the more energy inefficient processes associated with food production, namely packaging, transportation, and long-term storage. They also observed various aspects of a fully functional rooftop farm, including beekeeping and pollination, animal husbandry (chicken raising), and composting. They even got to taste some late-season herbs grown in the farm's many soil beds.

The field trip’s tie to the AP Environmental Science curriculum is urban food scarcity and unconventional space utilization. Students have read that by 2050, an estimated 75% of the worldwide human population will be living in cities and food scarcity will continue to increase as an issue for urban populations. As farmland gets replaced by urban development, rooftop farms like Brooklyn Grange will become a necessity rather than a novelty. 

Thanks to City Growers and Brooklyn Grange for this informative, engaging, and hands-on learning experience.

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