At the Common Ground High School in New Haven, Connecticut, a “green” charter school, the students occasionally have chicken for lunch. But before they can eat, they have to kill the chickens (registration required).

The New York Times reports on the wondrous Common Ground and other environmentally focused charter schools, where the entire curriculum is embedded in the natural world. The “Egg and Seed” class at Common Ground, an urban school that nonetheless keeps an organic garden along with chickens, goats, and a sheep with long hair used for spinning, combines “biology, ecology and literature” and ultimately ends up at the lunch table. That’s where the chickens come in:

Each student who wanted one got a bird. Following a modified-kosher method (no rabbi), the students stunned the birds with an electric shock, hung them upside down and cut the jugular vein. They call the chickens ‘meat birds’ to maintain emotional distance, but the experience can be difficult.


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