Virtual reality greenhouse field trips support STEM education ahead of Earth Day; Schools invited to apply by April 2
Milwaukee – BrightFarms and Pick ‘n Save are partnering to provide schools in the Milwaukee area with an in-classroom virtual reality learning experience to celebrate Earth Day. The events will take place during the week of April 16 – 20.
BrightFarms grows salad greens and herbs sustainably in a hydroponic greenhouse in Rochelle, Il. to meet the growing demand for year-round local produce. The greenhouse facility uses 80 percent less water, 90 percent less land and 95 percent less shipping fuel than conventional produce. Its products are sold exclusively at Pick ‘n Save and Metro Market in the Wisconsin market.
The learning experience will include a greenhouse tour viewable through provided VR goggles, an interactive presentation on creating a sustainable food system and a segment on keeping the Earth and ourselves happy through good nutrition. The events will finish off with a sustainable salad bar where students will be able to choose from a variety of vegetables and toppings.
“Our mission is to bring fresh, local, sustainably grown produce to everyone and advocate for a healthier planet,” said Tony Parr, BrightFarms greenhouse manager. “Part of that is educating our next generation of not just eaters, but growers, engineers and food scientists along the way! VR can amplify lessons that are already being shared in classrooms and is a powerful tool to engage students in a new way.”
“We are committed to building healthy communities, which goes beyond healthy eating. It also means supporting education, improving the lives of children and simply giving back to our neighbors. Together with our partner BrightFarms, we’re proud to bring this program to our communities and regularly provide them with fresh, local produce year-round,” said James Hyland, VP Communications & Public Affairs, Roundy’s Supermarket.
To be considered, schools should apply here by Monday, April 2: Application Link. School partners will be notified individually and announced via BrightFarms Facebook by Friday, April 6.
Schools that serve low-income families and can accommodate the space and time required for the virtual experience will be given priority, however, all schools are encouraged to apply. Schools that apply but are not selected for the experience will be sent a kit that includes VR goggles and instructions to access the greenhouse tour video so that STEM teachers may administer the experience. The experience is designed for grade 5 and above and will be customized to the grade level and age group of the selected schools.
For questions, schools may email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
BrightFarms grows local produce, nationwide. BrightFarms finances, builds, and operates local greenhouse farms in partnership with supermarkets, cities, capital sources, and vendors, enabling it to quickly and efficiently eliminate time, distance, and costs from the food supply chain. BrightFarms’ growing methods, a model for the future of scalable, sustainable local farming, uses far less energy, land and water than conventional agriculture. Fast Company recognizes BrightFarms as “One of World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies” and one of the “Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in Food” in the world. For more information, please visit www.brightfarms.com.
About Pick ‘n Save/Metro Market:
Pick ‘n Save/Metro Market are Wisconsin grocery banners of Roundy’s Supermarkets, Inc. (Roundy’s). Founded in Milwaukee in 1872, Roundy’s is a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Kroger Co. (NYSE:KR). Pick ‘n Save operates close to 100 locations throughout the state of Wisconsin and Metro Market operates seven store locations in the Metro Milwaukee and Madison areas. Pick ‘n Save and Metro Market are proud supporters of Kroger’s Zero Hunger | Zero Waste initiative to transform communities and improve the health of millions of Americans by 2025 #ZeroHungerZeroWaste