CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- An elementary school in Morgantown is one of five schools across the country with students invited to the White House this week to share a nutritious meal with first lady Michelle Obama.
A group of fifth-graders from North Elementary School will join students from Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia to celebrate an announcement from Obama about marketing healthier foods to America's children.
The announcement comes on the heels of the first lady's call to decrease the marketing of unhealthy foods to children, and on Wednesday, the young students will join her and Sesame Street characters Elmo and Rosita for the annual fall harvest in the White House garden.
North Elementary School was picked by the White House for its upkeep of an onsite garden and incorporation of the garden's produce into school meals; its partnership with the Morgantown farmers market; and a history of applying for grants that support health-conscience programs.
"I thought it was a prank phone call. She said she was the secretary for the first lady, and I thought, yeah right," North Elementary School Principal Natalie Webb said of the invitation she received from the White House earlier this month.
Webb said her school's health movement started four years ago, when a grant from the Department of Agriculture allowed funding for a garden on the school's property, which soon sprouted some beans and radishes and strawberries.
Teachers began using the garden to lead hands-on lessons, teaching math and science through the day's harvest.
Parents volunteered to maintain the garden during the summer months, which led to healthier meals at home, and a kindergarten teacher at the school now operates a blog with recipes based on the school's harvest.
Now, morning announcements at the school not only include the day's lunch menu, but details about where the food came from in the state, and whether it came from the school's very own yard.