Letter: Build farming into schools

Julie and Davie Yen began their Yaphank farm

Julie and Davie Yen began their Yaphank farm more than 15 years ago, after owning various other farms across Long Island. (Jan. 9, 2013) (Credit: Nancy Borowick)

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Davie and Julie Yen ["3 acres, 2 green thumbs," LI Life, Jan. 20], are correct in saying that "we need young people to continue farming." As a nation, we are embarking on a new way of thinking about food and farming, and it would be exciting if Long Island schools stayed ahead of the times by spearheading the move toward sustainable lifestyles; that is, using fewer resources.

Currently, education relies too heavily on standardized tests, and schools don't always take into account the various ways students learn. The use of gardens in our schools is a sustainable education approach that could open up a whole range of inventive teaching strategies in many subject areas.

The Yens spoke of innovative techniques such as hydroponics and aquaculture. Imagine if students could take classes in these techniques. Learning how to grow food could have a profound effect on how students view their individual health and the health of our environment.

Sustainable education could give our children the opportunity to become leaders in this field. On a local level, it could lead to renewed economic prosperity that is desperately needed for young Long Islanders.

Lauren Carmichael, Coram

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