The School Garden Cookbook

Typesetting • Design • Illustration 

During my time with FoodCorps and Captain Planet Foundation, I was teaching school children how to garden and cook. The focus: healthy eating. The idea: if kids grew and cooked their own food with a level of autonomy, they would make healthy eating decisions on their own. And it worked! 

But I was unhappy with the resources available during my first year of teaching. Recipes, even farm-to-school recipes, were often too complex, required ingredients that were uncommon, or just weren't culturally relevant to many of the students I was teaching. So, I conceptualized this cookbook from the ground up—it would feature extremely simple vegetarian recipes field tested in the classroom with teachers and students, it would let kids take the lead in the process of cooking, and it would be relevant to their interests.

My intention was to make it the perfect starting guide for teaching cooking in the classroom, so it had a list of pantry items, techniques for class management that I learned through the years, seasonal recipes, and even a wax-poetic ode to how happy I felt when students of mine would say, "Mr. Bang, I made that stir-fry for my grandma last night. I remembered the recipe and I did it all by myself, but this time I added chicken!" 

The book was designed within the branding guidelines of FoodCorps, and I made the illustrations, photographs, and style all approachable yet not too... "kiddie." Hundreds of copies have been printed, and teachers all over Georgia now have a copy to use in their classroom.