Park Slope's P.S. 10 Takes Bite Out of 'Big Apple Crunch'

By Leslie Albrecht on October 25, 2012 8:10am 

PARK SLOPE — If an apple a day really does keep the doctor away, no one at P.S. 10 will be needing medical attention for quite a while.

The school's 850 students — as well as parents, teachers and administrators — chowed down on an orchard's worth of apples Wednesday as part of a citywide bid to set a world record for simultaneous apple consumption.

The city-sponsored apple eat-a-thon, called Big Apple Crunch, promoted healthy eating by staging dozens of mass apple crunchings across the five boroughs. It was part of a nationwide event called Food Day.

"We're always having conversations with the kids about eating healthy, and we jump into any kind of initiative that supports that," P.S. 10 Principal Laura Scott said.

At P.S. 10, on Seventh and Prospect avenues, hundreds of students gnawed on whole apples and slices of the crispy fruit in the cafeteria at noon. The energetic crowd bubbled over with excitement when Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott strolled into the lunch room, holding an apple in one hand and shaking hands with awestruck students with the other.

The pro-apple propaganda seemed to work on some students. Second grader Marcel Villalobos declared that apples are tastier than his favorite snack, Doritos. Jonathan Lashley, also a second grader, admitted that he still prefers pizza.

PTA co-presidents Amy Schwartzman and Stephanie Hochman the Big Apple Crunch was one of several health-conscious moves the school has made recently. P.S. 10 has installed a salad bar in its cafeteria and students learn to harvest produce at the nearby Butterfly Garden.

"We're all about the whole kid," Hochman said. "It's not just reading and writing, it's physical education, healthful food and academics that make a balanced child."

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