Foodwise Kids | CUESA

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Foodwise Kids

CUESA Foodwise Kids and Families Fall 2021

CUESA has offered free nutrition and wellness programs such as Foodwise Kids to SFUSD students for the past decade. Foodwise Kids is a program for elementary school classes (grades 1 through 5) that in pre-COVID times used the farmers market as a classroom for empowering the next generation of healthy eaters. We nurture children’s love for fruits and vegetables, teach them to prepare healthy, seasonal foods, and raise their awareness of their role in a sustainable food system.

Fall 2021

We are planning Foodwise Kids program for Fall 2021 for potential in-person lessons. This can involve: 

  • One field trip to the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market
  • One follow-up cooking lesson in the classroom*
  • One Family Cook Night where students invite their families to an evening of cooking*

* Offered to a subset of participating classes

In the event of remote learning, we will also plan for the possibility of hosting synchronous, virtual lessons with the option of a seasonal produce drop-off to teachers. A series of educational videos that discuss the farmers market, farmers, and the produce they grow is also available for independent learning.

How to Apply:

If you are a teacher who is interested in participating, please fill out this form to apply:


Thank you!

Questions? Please contact Tiffany Chung of the CUESA Education Team at [email protected].

Online Resources for Teachers & Families

While in-person Foodwise Kids programming is on hiatus during the pandemic, please check out our online resources for activities you can do with your students or kids at home!

Video: What's Cool About Farmers Markets?

Have you ever wondered what makes farmers markets so cool? Meet some farmers and shoppers and hear why they like to shop at farmers markets.

Video: Where Does Food Come From?

Have you ever wondered where your food comes from? Meet Marsha, Modesto, and their daughter Saori on their farm, Oya Organics, to see how they grow the food that they bring to our farmers market.

Video: What Plant Parts Do We Eat?

When we eat fruits and vegetables, what part of the plants are we eating? Follow us on our journey through the plant life cycle as we learn what parts of plant we're actually eating.

Video: Do Fruits and Vegetables Have Superpowers?

Did you know that fruits and vegetables have superpowers? That's right - they have all sorts of superpowers that help our bodies stay strong and healthy! Join us for a superpower picnic to learn about just a few of the superpowers that fruits and vegetables have.

Video: What Senses Do We Use to Eat?

When we eat food, especially new food, what senses do we use? You might think we only use our sense of taste, but it turns out, we need to use all of our senses for the best experience! Join Claire, Malachi, and Charlotte as they taste their way through all the fruits and vegetables and come taste along with them!

Video: Knife Safety

Learn how to safely handle a knife, create a safe workspace, cut different shapes of fruits and vegetables, and more from Divya Pahwa of CUESA's Foodwise Kids program. Adult supervision required. This is a great activity for families to practice together, with kids ages seven and up.

Video: Seasoning

Dig into your pantry and learn all about seasoning, using your five senses, and adding flavor to foods with Divya Pahwa of Foodwise Kids. This is a great activity for families to do together, with kids age five and up (adult supervision encouraged).

Raising Foodwise Kids: Tips for Families

Get the whole family involved in shopping and cooking with fresh local ingredients! Cooking with children teaches skills that will serve them for life. Feel confident working with kids in the kitchen using our tips and seasonal recipes.

Kid-Friendly Recipes

We always suggest reviewing recipes with your child before beginning. Here’s a selection of kid-friendly recipes that use farmers market produce, developed by CUESA’s Foodwise Kids team.

About Foodwise Kids

Please note: In-person Foodwise Kids field trips and programming are currently on hiatus.

Foodwise Kids is a free program for elementary school classes that uses the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market as a classroom for empowering the next generation of healthy eaters. Through comparative tastings, exploring the market, and a hands-on cooking lesson, we nurture children’s love for fruits and vegetables, teach them to prepare healthy, seasonal foods, and raise their awareness of their role in a sustainable food system.

Foodwise Kids field trips begin with an introduction to the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market and California’s growing seasons. Students whet their palates with a produce tasting that features fruits or vegetables likely to be unfamiliar, and are urged to be open-minded and to engage their five senses. Next, students use their sense of smell to carefully practice adding flavor using liquid and dry ingredients. Students then venture into the market in small groups with their chaperones to select produce for their cooking class, using tokens provided by CUESA. They complete a worksheet that encourages them to meet farmers and learn more about their food and how it is grown.

Armed with produce and newfound knowledge, the children return to the kitchen to make a snack. Education Specialist Anisha Rathod and CUESA interns and volunteers teach basic cooking skills, such as how to add seasonings and properly use a knife. The students prepare a snack in small groups, using the ingredients they purchased. At the end of the class, the students proudly share their dishes with their classmates, teacher, and chaperones.

Since the Foodwise Kids program launched in fall of 2012, more than 10,000 students from local public elementary schools have participated.

Support Foodwise Kids

CUESA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, and we rely on your support to offer this program free of charge to public elementary school students. Please help us grow the next generation of healthy eaters by making a tax-deductible donation today »

Learn More about Foodwise Kids

Read stories, student quotes, and teacher testimonials about Foodwise Kids:



CUESA (Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture) is dedicated to growing thriving communities through the power and joy of local food. Learn More »