I'm attaching a rather eye-opening clip that's a preview to Jamie Oliver's new show that starts in March. Jamie goes into a 1st grade classroom to discuss vegetables. First, he uncovers a table of vegetables, to the horror of the class and then proceeds to ask them if they know what he's holding up. It's short (less than 2 minutes):
Now, initially, I was rather horrified myself that the kids couldn't identify rather routine veggies like tomatoes or potatoes. It's not like he was holding up Bok Choy or sunchokes here. So, I immediately decided to quiz my own children to see if they could pass the test.
Between my 2nd grader and Kindergartner, they got all the vegetables in the seed catalog I was using as a test except for the beets (and the exotic heirlooms). They even managed to correctly identify some vegetables I know they've never seen or eaten, like eggplant. I know they can do this because we grow these foods in our backyard and they look at the colorful seed catalogs and pick out what we will grow each year. And, they get it served or watch us prepare these foods.
So, I got to thinking. Growing up, I don't think I could identify these either as a first grader. I'm pretty sure we ate only canned vegetables because fresh was too expensive. Except for maybe a stray celery and a rare carrot here and there. I think today it has a lot to do with poor diets in addition to financial issues.
What about you? Do you think you would have been able to answer these questions as a child? Can your children correctly identify these vegetables?