Take a seat, children – today we will be learning all about Meat Free Monday. Those are the words that primary pupils across the UK may soon be hearing at the start of their school day, after the creation of a new teaching resource all about the campaign.
Put together by MFM in partnership with Jamie Oliver’s Kitchen Garden Project, the resource will help teachers in schools that have joined the campaign, or want to do so, to work the aims, ambitions and importance of Meat Free Monday into lessons. As well as notes helping them summarise what it’s all about, it will detail the meat-free steps kids can take to address one of the defining issues of their generation. With a little adaptation, the resource can also be of benefit in secondary schools.
There are several curriculum-linked activities for schoolchildren to get their teeth into, including getting children to create a chart of meat-free food according to the alphabet in order to help them with their literacy, learning about meat-free diets around the world for geography, and designing a four-week MFM diet for design and technology.
Oliver has contributed three delicious meat-free recipes that pupils can learn to make, including Vegetable Spaghetti Bolognaise, Mini Meat-Free Burgers and Super Squash Curry. He says of the campaign: “Meat Free Monday is the most brilliant excuse to focus on the incredible variety of veggies out there – the flavours, textures and wonderful dishes you can create is beyond belief. So here’s to Meat Free Monday and frankly, meat-free Wednesdays too.”
His Kitchen Garden Project is an online food education programme designed to teach children about where food comes from, what it is and how it affects their bodies. By making common cause with Meat Free Monday, children will now also gain a real understanding of how food affects the environment and the damage being wrought by the meat industry on people and planet alike.
This is not the first time that MFM founder Paul McCartney and Oliver have partnered up to spread the message that the way we eat has to change significantly. Last year Paul featured on a song co-written by the chef and his pop star friend Ed Sheeran, to promote Oliver’s Food Revolution Day to curb childhood obesity. Fresh from his success in convincing the government finally to implement a sugar tax, Oliver is the man of the moment in terms of health campaigns.
If your school is already involved in Meat Free Monday, drop us a line to let us know how you’re getting on. If it isn’t, download the Meat Free Monday teaching resource here.