Indonesian Food System: Palm Oil

In today’s class at John Marshall, it is my first day teaching at John Marshall alone, and teaching high school students. I worked off of the lesson that the previous instructor had done, in the comparison on other countries food pyramids and food systems. Indonesian food pyramid is a lot different than the U.S., they only eat meat monthly, and eat a large amount of vegetable oil, to where it has it’s own section on the food pyramid. After analyzing the food pyramid, we went over the most produced agriculture in the country, number one being Palm Oil.

I then showed a short video that explained what palm oil is, how it is farmed, the problems it is causing for the country, and how to sustainably harvest palm oil.The students thought this was so interesting. They had no idea what palm oil was, how it was produced, or that it was in almost all of our house hold products. I encouraged the students to start reading the ingredient labels on their cleaning and hygiene supplies to see how much palm oil that they use.

After this we went to the garden to clean it up, level out the soil, and plant pea seeds.

The garden at John Marshall needs a lot of work, and has a major squirrel problem. I am excited to teach the students how we can turn this garden into a prosperous one.

At the end of class I had all of the students write down 3 environmental topics that they wanted me to teach them about in class every week, the largest outcome being that they wanted to learn how to create and maintain a garden, and to learn about the plants we were planting and how to take care of them.

I am excited about the potential for John Marshall High School garden program!