Tag Archives: kelly meyer

Happy Birthday to Us!

10 Jun

It’s party time!

We’re celebrating two very important birthdays today. The American Heart Association is celebrating 90 years of saving and improving the lives of those affected by heart disease. In honor of our special day, we’re taking a look back at the biggest moments from our first 9 decades.

And we would be remiss if we didn’t give a birthday shout-out to our wonderful Teaching Gardens founder and fearless leader, Kelly Meyer. Kelly works tirelessly everyday to help children eat better and grow strong through gardening. She is such an inspiration and we absolutely adore her.


You have to watch this video of the super sweet kiddos at Peters Elementary singing  Happy Birthday to Kelly during their American Heart Association Teaching Garden planting day.


If anyone needs us, we’ll be the guys rockin’ the double party hats.

Until next week, happy growing everyone!


Kelly Meyer Nominated for Real Food Innovator Award

12 Mar

Special congrats to our fearless leader and co-founder, Kelly Meyer on her nomination for the United States Healthful Food Council’s Childhood Nutrition Food Innovator award. REAL Food innovator awards celebrate leaders in the promotion of healthful and sustainable foods.  Join us in wishing Kelly good luck in the comments! Go Kelly Go!



Other nominees include:

  • Diane Schmidt, Founder, Healthy Fare for Kids
  • Shazi Visram, Founder and CEO, Happy Family
  • Chef Tyler Florence, Co-founder, Sprout Foods
  • Catherine McCord, Author
  • Dr. Alan Greene
  • Chef Jamie Oliver
  • Kirsten Tobey and Kristin Richmond, Founders, Revolution Foods

Congrats to all these nutrition warriors! Thank you for fighting to make our world happier and healthier.

Lakers star helping kids get active, eat healthy

13 Aug

gasol foundation

Lettuce, watermelon and a fresh batch of herbs are growing at the Los Angeles Boys & Girls Club, and Lakers star Pau Gasol – as well as the American Heart Association – get an assist for making it happen.

The fruits and vegetables are part of an American Heart Association Teaching Garden that was planted at the club during the Gasol Foundation’s first annual Healthy Competition, an eight-week challenge between children in Los Angeles (where Pau plays) and Memphis (where his brother Marc stars for the Memphis Grizzlies).

The youngsters were encouraged to become healthier through physical activity and healthy eating. Planting a garden and teaching the kids the benefits of eating the harvest offers two lessons in one, which is the crux of this innovative program.

“What we’re doing is simple, elegant and fun. Kids can relate – and all the statistics show what changing eating habits can do,” said American Heart Association volunteer Kelly Meyer, the founder of the Teaching Gardens program. “We love working with athletes like Pau because they are very much a part of our message of being physically active and eating healthy foods. It’s a natural fit.”

Although the competition is over, the garden continues to grow. So will the lessons learned by the 27 children ages 6 to 15 who were part of the event – none of whom had ever even eaten a salad, said Randy Ryan, the American Heart Association’s manager of Teaching Gardens in Los Angeles.

Reblogged from American Heart Association blog. Click the link for the full story! 

Richardson Elementary celebrates Aetna sponsored American Heart Association Teaching Garden

7 Jun

richardson elementary

Students, staff and faculty at Richardson Elementary couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful day, as they were joined by parent and community volunteers to celebrate the dedication of their American Heart Association Teaching Garden on Monday, June 3. The garden, sponsored by Aetna, is intended to serve as a nutritional learning tool and includes plants such as tomatoes, peppers and fresh herbs. The students will get the chance to nurture the garden all summer and see the results of their labor in fall when harvest time arrives.
The dedication began with a warm welcome from Principal, Julie Petruna, who thanked everyone for their participation. The highlight of the afternoon was when a third grade class recited a poem about gardening and a second grade class sang “You Are My Sunshine.” The dedication concluded with Richardson Elementary receiving a Teaching Garden plaque to display in their school, honoring their commitment to health.

“We are so excited for this opportunity to work with our students to educate them about the importance of making healthy choices within the context of the Teaching garden and its curriculum. The teachers and I hope this experience will inspire our student body to take the tools they learn from working together and put them to use for success in their future efforts,” said Principal at Richardson, Julie Petruna.

The American Heart Association Teaching Garden Program aims to teach elementary school students around the country the importance of healthy eating by providing hands-on learning experiences. With the rate of childhood obesity on the rise, the program’s focus is on teaching proper nutrition at an early age. By showing children that not all food comes from a can or package, it gives them knowledge that may help them make healthier choices as they get older.

“We are very proud to partner with Aetna and the team at Richardson Elementary to help bring a better understanding of healthy eating to our next generation. By adopting healthy nutrition patterns at an early age, we hope these students will grow up to share their knowledge of healthy eating with their families and friends,” said Ashley Smas, senior Heart Walk director with the American Heart Association.

Aetna has sponsored Teaching Gardens in five elementary schools across the nation, and Aetna nurses have given their time and volunteered at each location to help build the teaching gardens. Along with 10 planter boxes, Richardson will also receive items such as garden gloves, seed packets, trowels, cultivators, pruners, buckets, and a hose. The staff will receive a mini camcorder with an 8 GB SD card to help record and share the success of the garden with students, parents, staff and the community.

The American Heart Association has a 30 year history working with children and schools; currently, the association has an active relationship with nearly one-third (30,000) of the country’s schools. The Teaching Gardens program is part of a larger American Heart Association, My Heart. My Life. healthy living initiative, designed to help Americans understand what it means to be healthy, and to take action. For more information about the Teaching Gardens program and how you can participate, visit http://www.heart.org/teachinggardens or call 330-664-1905.

reblogged from the Cuyahoga Falls Patch 

Summer Garden Checklist

31 May


Summer break is almost here! As you countdown the days to warm weather, summer vacations, and no homework, remember that your Teaching Garden still needs help to grow healthy and strong. To help keep your crop on track, we’ve created this summer garden check list! Following these easy steps now will help insure a healthy, tasty crop when your kiddos return to the classroom.

  • Find your Garden Guardians

Keep your garden healthy and strong during summer break by asking students, parents, or community members to watch over your crop while school is out. Having teams sign up for 1 week of garden maintenance will save you lots of time (and headaches) once school is back in session.

  • Weed now, not later

Be Proactive! Discourage weeds from sprouting over the summer by getting rid of them now. Host a weeding party before the school year ends to help keep the weed count to a minimum.

  • Mulch

Add an extra layer of mulch to the garden to help your plants retain water while keeping pests at bay.

  • H2O

Consider installing an automatic drip irrigation system to keep your crop hydrated while being water efficient! It saves time and will put your mind at rest knowing that your plants are getting the water they need during the hot summer months. Ask your local gardening center what they recommend for your region. Equipment for a small school garden can cost less than $100!

  • Photos & Video

Document your garden’s progress. Be sure to use the flip camera provided with your Teaching Garden to take pictures and video of your students in action.

  • Share with us!

Share your garden’s progress with us on social media! Love Instagram? Take a pic and tag @American_Heart  with #TeachingGardens. Tweet us using @teachinggardens. Or share your progress on our Facebook page! We love to share your photos and stories so join our online community today!

  • Teaching Garden Journal

Make sure you’re using your garden journal! Keep students engaged with the garden over summer by asking them to journal about its progress. The journal makes a great summer writing assignment, and will keep the kids’ veggie enthusiasm high!

  • Survey Time!

We want to see your growth, but we need data measure it.

For schools new to the Teaching Gardens program, make sure that you have filled out and submitted your Pre-Survey. Gardens in their second cycle after completing a harvest should have completed the Post Survey.

Happy summer Teaching Gardeners! We can’t wait to see you grow!

Kelly Meyer blogs at the mom-congress

26 Apr

Teaching Gardens founder- Kelly Meyer blogs on the mom-congress website. She says “Dr. Seuss’ timeless story, The Lorax, reinforces what we as moms instinctively know – when kids plant the seeds and nurture and harvest the plants, they learn the value of good eating habits and appreciate the environment”..

Read the rest of the blog at the link below: