If you know me–and hopefully y’all all feel like you do–you know I’m not a super political person. When the elections come around, sure, I pay attention–well, kind of–but in my day to day life I’m honestly more concerned with what’s happening on The Bachelor, whether or not they’ve restocked the delicata squash at the natural food store, or if my kids have finally mastered area and perimeter.
There is, however, one issue that does get me “all riled up”: school lunches and childhood nutrition.
After having seen documentaries and countless TV shows and news reports, read up on rules and regulations, and, more importantly–as a teacher– witnessed it on a daily basis, I’ve been a quiet activist for school lunch reform and nutritional education for kids for a long time. [And does the day Jamie Oliver tweeted at me still go down as one of my all-time favorite blogger moments? Yes. Yes it does.]
Last year, in their efforts to bring about healthy changes in the diets of kids around the country, Chobani nitroduced a kid-centric line of Greek yogurt called Champions. They were so kind as to mail me a generous amount of both flavors to give to my students in Austin–kids who had never eaten blueberries, much less tried Greek yogurt. When Emily emailed me again this year, asking if I might like to sample their two new flavors with my class, well, you can bet I jumped at the chance.*
*And immediately e-mailed quite a few people to gush about how amazing I felt to be able to do this again.The two new flavors are Orange Vanilla and Vanilla Chocolate Chunk. [And I will forgive Chobani for their lack of grammatically correct punctuation in labeling because they do such good work for the kids...but I do have to point it out. ] The Orange Vanilla/orange vanilla is akin to the Creamsicles we all loved as kids in the lunchroom*(and perhaps still love?), while the Vanilla Chocolate Chunk/vanilla chocolate chunk looks like Cookies ‘n’ Cream.
*But not quite as much as the Strawberry Shortcake ice cream bars. Just sayin’.Since I find extreme joy in teaching 5th grade math in a way that is somewhat bizarre considering my English major background and love of language, I knew that rather than just give the kids the yogurt and ask them what they thought……we should probably also take the time to utilize our newfound knowledge of angles and fractional equivalents to make pie charts out of the results.
As you can (or cannot) see, following a rigorous taste test involving only one minor skirmish about Bobby getting more than Susie (a victory in itself to say the least), Orange Vanilla squeaked by with just a few more votes than Vanilla Chocolate Chunk. From the kids’ reactions they couldn’t get past the slightly sour Greek yogurt paired with not-so-sweet chocolate.*
*I did not, however, have this problem.Not only did Chobani mail me enough to feed my math class, they’ve graciously offered to provide one of YOU little Smart Kitchen students a tasting of the new Chobani Champions flavors as well!And since the best match for Greek yogurt is granola…I have some of that to throw in too. One of the reasons I wanted to be a LOVE Blogger for LOVE GROWN FOODS was because of their consistent efforts to educate kids and schools on healthy eating. I contacted Laura at Love Grown, and she jumped at the chance to combine two (2) packages of Love Grown Granola* with the two (2) flavors of Chobani Champions for a ”Champion of Love” Giveaway! [And not just ushy gushy February-inspired love, but the kind we should give to the kids in our lives all year round.]
So how do you win?
MANDATORY: Sign Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution petition which states simply, “I support the Food Revolution. Kids need better food at school and better health prospects. We need to keep cooking skills alive.” Then, leave a comment telling me you’ve done so AND tell me your favorite kids-friendly meal or snack.
Optional bonus entries [and leave a separate comment for each]:
Only I get to be that cool.