Tag Archives: ellen darnall

5 things to know to celebrate National Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Month

June is National Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Month, and I thought it would be a chance to highlight some great programs MSU Extension offers as well as some helpful resources that you can use with your families. Here are five things to know to celebrate National Fresh Fruit and Vegetables Month.

  1. MSU Extension’s Michigan Fresh campaign helps people explore the state’s bounty of fresh, locally grown fruits and vegetables. The cross-institute team of Agriculture and Agribusiness, Heath and Nutrition and Greening Michigan staff provide fact sheets with recipes, gardening tips and preservation techniques for over 80 Michigan-grown foods available for free online at MSU Extension offices and in over 20 farmers markets across the state. The Michigan Fresh team also has a series of newspaper articles available at this link on Sharepoint for customization and distribution to local media outlets by MSU Extension offices.

 

  1. Be sure to follow Michigan Fresh on Facebook, Instagram and check out over 1,800 recipes on our Michigan Fresh Pinterest Thanks to Health and Nutrition Institute team member Ellen Darnall, we have a new series of recipe videos. Check them out online at the MI Health Matters Facebook page. Recipes include Michigan asparagus guacamole, Michigan blueberry muffins, Michigan berry yogurt parfait, Michigan maple syrup balsamic vinaigrette, Michigan broccoli salad, and more! If you would like more information about Michigan Fresh or would like to join the team, please contact Kendra Wills.

 

  1. Where is your local farmers market? Planning on traveling around Michigan and want to find one during your trip? The Michigan Farmers Market Association has a comprehensive list and map of all of the markets in Michigan. Find your local farmers market and bring fresh, locally produced fruits and vegetables into your kitchen.

 

  1. Interested in planning your own vegetable garden? MSU Extension has a webpage dedicated to providing resources on when and where to plant. It also covers building garden soil, managing pests, planning your garden and harvesting vegetables. The site also contains growing tip sheets A to Z, from asparagus to turnips.
  1. Hoping to find ways to add more vegetables and fruits into your eating habits? In her article, “June Is National Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Month,” Zelda Felix-Mottley helps us take an inventory of our eating habits and gives us tips on increasing our fruit and vegetable consumption.

I hope this information let you know a bit more about our wide range of resources that help our communities and can also help you. Have a happy fruits and veggies month!

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eXtension awards grant for developing adaptive learning techniques

The eXtension Foundation has identified nine projects that will be funded as part of its 2015 Innovation Request for Proposals. Forty-eight proposals were submitted, and nine were awarded for the granting period of July 1, 2015, to June 30, 2016. Grantees will be required to engage in face-to-face meetings with the eXtension Foundation to gauge impact, conduct at least one professional development session on the project, and make a presentation at the 2016 National eXtension Conference next March.

Gwyn Shelle, Alan Pilkenton, Dawn Earnesty, Ellen Darnall and Erin Powell submitted the proposal “Building Personalized Learning Experiences for Adult Learners Through Adaptive Learning Techniques,” for which they have been awarded the grant. This project will evaluate and pilot adaptive learning tools for future Cooperative Extension programming. Adaptive learning refers to a nonlinear approach to instruction that adjusts to student needs as they progress through course content – resulting in a customized experience for the learner based on prior knowledge.

The team of experts will research several existing adaptive learning tools and consult with experts in the field of online learning who are currently implementing adaptive learning into their programming. They will design and deliver adaptive learning activities within existing Michigan State University Extension online courses through several selected pilot projects. Specific objectives of the project include:

  • Increase knowledge of adaptive learning tools through research and collaboration with leaders in the field of online learning who are investing in adaptive learning tools. Many adaptive learning tools will be assessed and ranked based on potential use within Cooperative Extension Services programming.
  • Design and deliver adaptive learning activities within existing online courses through several selected pilot projects. Online focus groups will be administered to receive qualitative feedback on the effectiveness of the adaptive learning method.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of the adaptive learning activities through online evaluations, retention rates compared to traditional online content, and general course data.

This grant will go a long way toward helping MSU Extension reach our audiences in new ways, and we’re excited to see where it goes!

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