Archive for the ‘Food – Packaging and Shipping’ category

Earth Dinner 2012

April 20, 2012

Our Earth Dinner was a delicious and heart-warming night including chocolate prizes, delicious kale soup, quinoa salad, and much more.  Thanks to the generous donations of community members, we had a lovely meal, full of conversation.  Mr. Semlear brightened up the event with a collection of gorgeous marigolds potted in little recycled jars. Thanks to all for joining us, and for making it so much fun.

Food Is Our Common Ground

March 26, 2011

Grace Church School is hosting a panel discussion about Food, Kids, and Sustainability on April 25th at 6pm (86 Fourth Avenue, 10003).  We are invite you to be a part of the discussion!

Our panelists include;

  • Jerusha Klemperer, Associate Director for National Programs at Slow Food, USA
  • Michael Anthony, Gramercy Tavern
  • Dan Tainow, Lower East Side Ecology Center
  • Ben Flanner, Brooklyn Grange, Long Island City
  • Lydia Walshin, Editor and Writer for The Perfect Pantry, SoupChick, and Drop In and Decorate
  • Jude Sheehan, Chef at Grace Church School

We plan to focus the discussion on the guiding idea that “Food Is Our Common Ground,” emphasizing the power of children’s eating habits to transform our homes, our schools, and our city into a sustainable place.  Please RSVP if you’d like to attend but are not a GCS community member.  We welcome all interested guests!


Jerusha Klemperer is the associate director of national programs at Slow Food USA, a grassroots network of volunteer chapters that are working towards a more just and sustainable food system. She is also a writer of all kinds of things including book reviews, blog posts, and tweets, and is a contributor to the Huffington Post,,, and her personal blog Eat Here 2 ( She is an alum of Grace Church School, with fond memories of cooking and learning with Mrs. Hayes back in kindergarten. In her free time she sometimes cooks up food and fun with Conni’s Avant Garde Restaurant (

Mike Anthony began cooking professionally in Tokyo, Japan where he quickly grew to love the Japanese connection to the changing seasons.  Following his time in Japan, Mike moved to France to hone his culinary skills at a number of renowned restaurants.  He joined Gramercy Tavern as the Executive Chef in 2006 and under his leadership the restaurant has earned a number of accolades including a three star New York Times review in 2007 and the James Beard Award for “Outstanding Restaurant” in 2008.  In both 2008, 2009 and 2010, Mike has been nominated for the James Beard Award for “Best Chef in New York City.”

Daniel Tainow learned the importance of protecting our environment early in life while exploring the disappearing forests of New Jersey and fishing with his family aboard his uncle’s NY/NJ Baykeeper boat in the Hudson-Raritan Estuary.  Daniel earned a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science and Engineering from James Madison University in Virginia, and then went on to earn a Master of Arts in Environment and Community from Humboldt State University in California.  He has taught and organized environmental education programs as an AmeriCorps Member and a Naturalist in Cape Cod National Seashore, Point Reyes National Seashore, Watchung Reservation in New Jersey, and most recently as the Manager of the NYC Compost Project at the Queens Botanical Garden.  Daniel has been a resident of the Lower East Side for five years.  He is a member of Transportation Alternatives East Side Committee, serves on the board of the Western Queens Compost Initiative and hopes to volunteer at a local community garden now that he no longer has an hour and a half commute.

Chef Jude Sheehan has been re-imagining Grace Church School’s lunch program for years, bringing new, innovative recipes, green ideas, and energy saving practices to our kitchen. He is a well loved member of our community. Just ask any student at GCS!





From Lydia Walshin’s Website: “I live in Rhode Island most of the time, in a small log house with a great kitchen where I teach cooking classes and love to gather groups of friends to cook together. (Sometimes I live in Boston, too.) For the past 18 years I’ve been a food writer, but I’ve been a writer, mostly for nonprofit organizations, for my entire career. And I’ve been writing The Perfect Pantry since June 2006. (You can go back to the beginning and read every post, starting here.) I’m the founder and director of a nonprofit organization called Drop In & Decorate. I hope you’ll go to the site and read more about how we decorate and donate cookies for donation to food pantries, family shelters, and other local agencies serving neighbors in need. It’s a wonderful program, and you can be part of it.”

Head Farmer Ben Flanner is a trained engineer with a background in finance. In 2009 Ben founded Eagle Street Rooftop Farms, the first rooftop soil farm in New York. Ben’s tedious record keeping, attention to detail, and relationships in the community are a crucial asset to the farm.

Food, Inc.

March 12, 2011

The Green Gremlins have been studying the film Food, Inc.  and talking about food systems, and food safety.  James Beard once said, “food is our common ground,” and we can see the truth in this as pedestrian New Yorkers, sharing meals, packaging wastes on the streets, and the occasional scene of homelessness and hunger.    This Grow, NYC video explores the role of Bodegas in our lives.

Green Cup Challenge Video: Snack Attack!

February 8, 2011

You can VOTE FOR GCS, and see the video submissions of other schools at the Green Cup Challenge website.

Here’s a quick, fun, update!  Another unrelated video contest is being held for high schools called Green For All.  Here is a great submission from the Climate Crew!  Enjoy!

“When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe.” John Muir

December 3, 2010

UPCYCLE YOUR HOLIDAYS!   In this “Teacher Feature,” we visit Ms. Loverme, who has been UPCYCLING with artistry and her considerable crafting talent for years. Her jewelry incorporates materials she finds as well as green practices that reduce waste and toxics.   She describes her upcycling philosophy here;

“I’m an up-cycler. I developed the habit of turning overlooked and discarded items into fanciful creations as a child, when my mother would temper my boredom by offering me random containers, scraps, and other oddities with the directive to “see what you can make with this.” I took the task seriously and always managed to come up with something fun, if of somewhat questionable utility.

Today the proclivity to turn cast-offs into something new lives on in my jewelry designs. I combine coins, discarded paper and bits and pieces from broken or abandoned baubles in my work. I enjoy the alchemy involved in transforming materials that some regard as useless into precious things.”

You can see Ms. Loverme’s work at her Etsy Shop, Wabisabi Brooklyn!  Click Here.  And don’t forget to shop at for more upcycled and re-usable gift ideas. Etsy is also a great place to visit if you are looking for hand-made, meaningful gifts. 

The short video below (from the UK) covers what Upcycling is, as well as what types of handmade holiday decorations can be updated to help reduce your carbon footprint.

If you’ve collected materials that you think an artist can use, check out the Upcycle Exchange‘s website for ways to share materials directly with crafters.

“Civilization is a limitless multiplication of unnecessary necessities.” – Mark Twain

November 30, 2010

From one Mark to another!  Our history teacher, Mr. Weinsier, has a green habit that many teachers share – using a re-usable mug for hot drinks.  This holiday season, carry your cocoa in a re-usable mug.  “A report conducted jointly by the Alliance for Environmental Innovation and Starbucks found that 1.9 billion cups were used by Starbucks in 2000.[5]  In 2006, Starbucks reported that this figure had grown to 2.3 billion cups for use at their stores.” Typically, the paper used for coffee cups is made of new trees, not recycled paper.  Manufacturing these cups takes a lot of water, and energy.  Crazy, considering that they are usually used once. (source 1 & source 2 with more facts about coffee cup use)

Mark shares his mug story;  “I use my favorite reusable mug — a gift from friends at our partner school in New Delhi, India — whenever I go to the faculty room for my favorite Earl Grey tea.  Two years ago, I used to take a new cup every time I drank tea — and that wasted a lot of cups.  One day I decided I was going to bring in a mug from home, so I brought in the one from Vasant Valley.  (Sometimes I even add a little of a spice called cardamom to remind me of India!)  Now I try to challenge myself to never have tea here at school unless my mug is with me!”

Trees Made of Trees!

November 29, 2010

The Green Team, as well as various 7th, 2nd and 5th graders, helped create some stylish paper trees for this year’s Holiday Shopping event, held tomorrow (11/30) all day.  It’s an easy way to make something festive out of the many food, gift and clothing catalogues and magazines that fly in via the mail all December long.  To make your own holiday trees, see this easy instruction guide from the Crafty Crow.

Magazine Tree How-To

Looking for more ways to make your holidays green?  Try shopping at  This year, you will find many gift ideas at the online shop.  Every item you purchase has a triple-powered advantage!  You will save money, reduce your carbon footprint, and help GCS’s green efforts.  Money earned from the online shop will be used to bring more sustainable programs to our school.