Brooklyn Demonstration School

P.S. 216 is our inaugural Demonstration School and largest garden and kitchen classroom space.

Putting down roots

In 2010, Edible Schoolyard NYC transformed the cement parking lot of P.S. 216 into a flourishing half-acre organic garden where students learn to grow and harvest roughly 160 different types of fruits, grains, herbs, and vegetables. With the third lowest percentage of open green space in Brooklyn, Gravesend was a natural choice for establishing our inaugural Demonstration School.

Creating curriculum to reflect a community

P.S. 216, the Arturo Toscanini School, is an elementary school with a diverse student body and multi-cultural community of families from Coney Island, Brighton Beach, and Gravesend. The neighborhood’s demographics inform our curriculum. Whether we’re preparing Russian-style borscht or Pakistani and Indian aloo gobi, the classroom experience connects our kids to the cultures and heritage of their shared community.

“Try new foods and don’t yuck
anybody’s yum.”
— Fourth grader at P.S. 216

Serving as a New York City Showcase School

In the fall of 2015, P.S. 216 was named one of twenty-six official Showcase Schools by the NYC Department of Education on the basis of our edible education program. That’s out of 1,800 NYC public schools total! At three official visitations each year — all-day, intensive professional development workshops — large groups of New York City educators can be inspired by our students, our teachers, and our classes.