Carpinteria Community Farm cultivates outdoor educational opportunities | business | – Coast View News | Team Cansler

Megan Moreno, Lanterns Global Founder and Visionary Director, and her husband Saul Moreno, Lanterns Global Administrative Director and CEO, are cultivating outdoor educational opportunities for our community. The Morenos, Carpinteria Avenue’s new land managers, talk about their plans and programs in the following interview.

CVN: What is your vision for the farm and how is it going so far?

The Morenos: Our vision for Carpinteria Community Farm is to create an educational farm where children from a variety of backgrounds and programs (home schooled, traditional schooled, after school programs and weekend programs) can experience the joys of outdoor learning and farm life.

We have completed Phase One! Phase One included: making the farm secure (picking up/digging up lots of trash and dumped debris that was lying all over our 2.5 acre property), erecting a fence around the farm and two lockable gates, pruning trees and having them pruned secure, running irrigation lines and bringing the water to the avocado orchard and bringing in organic mulch and wood chips for part of the farm, a shipping container was donated for storage. A local from Carpinteria donated his time to make 10 Cedar Picnic Tables for us.

Phase Two includes building a Gaga Ball Pit (a game that’s a hybrid of handball and dodgeball), tilling the soil in preparation for planting, laying irrigation lines in our 2-acre vegetable garden, and tilling the soil on the remaining one open country.

Phase three involves planting after the ground is ready. We’re hoping to grow vegetables in half an acre, a cover crop in half an acre, and a native California Chumash garden in another half acre.

Please describe the three programs you currently offer (Terrain, El Jardín and Farm to Table). What distinguishes each?

El Jardín was our first local educational program that we created with all of our own children in mind. Learning the Spanish language through immersion was one of our hopes for our children. El Jardín is a Spanish immersion program that includes focused vocabulary in Spanish plus fun activities, gardening and art projects spoken in Spanish in a natural outdoor setting. It is a four-hour drop-off program that meets in small groups of no more than 12 students and has various semester Spanish topics. El Jardín is for children in grades TK-8.

Terrain is a new program from us. We created it inspired by woodland schools, with one of our daughters in mind who loves to be outside, adventure and move her body. Terrain has its home base on the farm where they tend to the chickens in the mornings and have a daily storybook that they read together. From there they explore the cliffs where they climb trees, search for animals, play, pretend and hike. Terrain is for children aged three to six years.

Farm to Table is another new program from us that meets at the farm. We start very small with a group of eight children for grades Kindergarten through third grade. Some children come in one day, others in three days, and they are taught all academic subjects on an outdoor farm. Mathematics and language arts are individualized subjects in which history, science, art and textbooks are taught in a group. Farm to Table is a five hour drop off program and we hope it will continue to grow and be a supportive enrichment program for families.

What drives your desire for outdoor education?

Our own children certainly fuel our desire for outdoor education. I have been homeschooling as a family for the last ten years and have found that my children enjoy learning outside in a peaceful place. The more I researched about alternative education around the world, studies show that places where children spend more time outdoors have higher learning levels and happier children. I live in Carpinteria and especially after the Covid-19 season that we have all been through. I think we all have a newfound appreciation for the physical and emotional health that comes from being outdoors.

For those who didn’t attend your last fundraiser at brewLAB and would like to support your organization, how can you make a contribution?

We were happy about everyone who came to our first fundraiser – thank you very much! And to those interested in supporting our work, thank you! We kindly accept tax-deductible donations through our website:

What do you and your family like to do together when you are not on the farm?

We love Carpinteria and go to the beach with friends most weekends. Hiking, biking and soccer are some other activities we enjoy doing as a family.

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