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Charette 2023

Nutrition and Food Literacy Movement Canada  Charette - May 2023

Charette is derived from the French word for cart or chariot. In the Parisian art school, a cart would gather the art from various mediums at the end of each day for safe-keeping until the next school day. A Charette, brings together partners working on an overarching topic from different perspectives and viewpoints, to collaborate, problem solve, and pool resources toward achieving an actionable plan/objective. 

The aim of the Nutrition and Food Literacy Canada Charette is to bring together leading educators, community-based organizations, parents, physicians, researchers, school boards, teachers’ colleges, and community members with interest in food, food systems, education, child and adult nutrition and health, equitable/diverse pedagogy, and primary prevention, to ‘catch fire’ around the ambitious, yet achievable and timely goal of systemic nutrition and food literacy across the Canadian school system.

 

This is an education endeavor, as much as it is a public health one, complete with longitudinal goals of capacity building and upstream prevention across generations. In time, leveraging existing institutional systems to uptake this systemic approach, can shift the culture of Canadians to be educated and informed about nutrition and food starting with our children and teachers and extending into community level and regional impacts that can be measured in many ways, with implications for health and well-being, education, and the social determinants of health across the life-course.  

The vision is 2-pronged:

1. The co-creation of an ‘interwoven’ curriculum for K-12 students on nutrition and food literacy. This curriculum will be ‘stitched’ into the existing curriculum across all grades and subjects, and will include recorded modules/lesson plans and assessments that support the teaching and learning of fundamental nutrition and food literacy concepts. The design of these lesson plans and assessments with associated video modules offers some degree of in-service teacher training, and flexibility for connecting to existing subject curriculum.

2. The co-creation of a teacher’s certificate in nutrition and food literacy (set of modules and experiential learning components) that is concise yet robust across all Canadian Teachers’ Colleges. This training will not replace the work of other professions, but rather empowers and equips teachers with core knowledge, and competencies to teach on topics related to nutrition and food literacy.  Modules will include contact information for reliable sources. The curriculum will include both standard, fundamental concept modules, as well as specialized topics that teachers can select according to their planned ‘teachables’. Additional Qualifications (AQ) can also be provided for established teachers to boost their qualifications.

 

Key Objectives of the Charette on Monday, May 29th (Hart House, University of Toronto) are to:

1. Bring together community- experts, leaders, changemakers, dreamers, and do-ers, some recently joining and others having led in this space for decades (and some of whom may no longer be with us)

2. Exchange and share knowledge and perspectives with passion, love, and commitment, to the topic of nutrition and food literacy from our different perspectives and social locations – ‘dreaming big’ on how to achieve nutrition and food literacy across Canada

3. Critically examine and discuss the benefits and impacts, questions and strategies, to introducing and implementing the 2-pronged approach of upstream, systemic, and sound nutrition and food literacy across Canadian Teachers’ Colleges and K-12 schools centered on equity, diversity, and inclusion

4. Create virtual working groups with a variety of community partners and perspectives across Canada, to support the process of co-creating a nutrition and food literacy curriculum for Teachers’ Colleges and for K-12 students

5. Set the stage to:

  • Build working relationships with partners in each province (including community partners, expert/professional groups, school boards, and teachers’ colleges) 

  • Establish partnerships with government partners to implement programming and legislation as appropriate for ensuring all students and teachers in Canadian schools to have access to sound, equitable, and consistent, knowledge and education around food and nutrition literacy

  • Develop metrics and measures of goals, successes, opportunities, ongoing support

  • Establish global partnerships and collaborations in food and nutrition education

A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in.
Greek Proverb
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