Author Archive for K.Graybill

Kim Graybill is a veteran Family and Consumer Science teacher who teaches both middle and high school in Pennsylvania.

Learning About the Ages & Stages of Children through Dramatic Skits

Middle school students can be high energy and constantly moving! So, it’s always best to keep them engaged, using interactive lessons and activities whenever possible. This interactive lesson and activity was shared by Donna Cabrera of Martin L. Mattei Middle School, Pittston, Pennsylvania. In this lesson, Donna has her students learning about the ages and stages of children in a fun, creative, dramatic way; skits! Continue reading to see how she does this!

Felt Bookmark Sewing Project

This fun project was designed by Sasha Roble of Central Dauphin High School, Pennsylvania as a beginner sewing project and can be utilized at nearly any grade level. Ideally, this is a great project to use in conjunction with a unit on time and resource management. The bookmarks are unique and provide students with the opportunity to construct a practical and useful product. They can be sewn relatively quickly (4 – 5 days) and are not costly to make.

Piaget’s Relational Concepts & Busy Book Project

Piaget is probably one of my most favorite theorists to teach about! I “get” his theory of how children learn and the stages or periods they go through. I’ve seen it in action with many of the preschoolers that participated in our school’s Circle Time program as well as in my own children! I think the other reason I really like teaching this theory is because it’s so “hands on” and interactive! If you’ve never taught about Piaget’s relational concepts, check out below lesson, activities and project.

Vitamins & Minerals: Speed Dating Style

Tired of having your students get up in front of the class and share presentations? Looking for a more engaging way to present materials to students without tying up days for presentations? This lesson not only has students learning about the role of vitamins and minerals in our body, but has them moving around, sharing the information in a conversational manner, with a technique referred to as “speed dating”. Read on for more details and give this technique a try the next time you need to share a lot of information quickly!

Storybook Game Boards

There’s so many extension activities you can do with children’s story books! Linda Foca Mitten, a FACS teacher from Danbury High School, Connecticut shares this creative game board project that her Early Childhood Workshop honors class designs and utilizes when they teach at both an onsite preschool program and at the elementary level. Linda shares that her students have entire teaching days at their onsite program that they are responsible for and the themes are usually based on children’s books. Therefore, it seemed only logical that the project be connected to a popular children’s book and played during free play time at the center.

Spotlight on a FACS Blog: Kayla Pins

Sometimes the non-school related blogs I follow do a blog hopping where they share other people’s blogs. I thought that would be a great idea to do this with Family & Consumer Science teachers who write their own blogs. The featured blog in this post belongs to Kayla Pins, a Health and Family & Consumer Sciences teacher, who hails from Iowa and teaches grades 7-12 at Cascade Jr.-Sr. High School. I email interviewed Kayla some questions about her blog…so read on to learn more and see some of the impressive lessons she has to offer!

Teen Pregnancy A-Z

Recently, I mentioned that my school was now 1:1 and I have been updating some of my lessons as time permits, to make them more student directed, as well as incorporate technology. Teen pregnancy, in my opinion, can be difficult to teach. I’ve tried teaching it in so many ways over the years, with success, but nothing I would really write about. This lesson was different, not only because it was self-directed, but because students really cooperated, collaborated and communicated in a way that produced a creative A to Z project. The way they worked both individually and collectively as a group made me super proud of them! So much so, that I couldn’t wait to share this update with all of you!

Sheila’s Story: Decision Making Small Group Activity

I’ve been trying to update some of my lesson plans and activities to make them more student directed, as well as incorporate technology since we are now a 1:1 school. While I liked the large group decision making activity I did in this post, I wanted to build on the decision making process and use I-messages as a way to reinforce what students learned in previous lessons, but also make it a smaller group activity to encourage more discussion from all students and include technology. So, as a way to introduce teen pregnancy, I came up with a new way to meet all of the criteria mentioned above and the results were amazing! As I circulated the room while students were completing this assignment, I couldn’t believe the levels of discussion I was hearing about each of the options, including the process of actually deciding on the best option and reasons to support it. Students really got into this assignment and told me how much they liked it compared to the original format. So, give it a try and let me know if you get similar results from your students!

Crostini Appetizers: Mini-Lesson & Lab

You never know when you’re going to need a relatively quick and simple appetizer for entertaining that looks like you’ve spent hours preparing! Crostini to the rescue! I like to teach students that party foods don’t have to be super difficult, expensive or time consuming to pull together. The self-directed mini-lesson provides some background information about crostini and how to make them and then students get to pretend they have to pull together a few crostini appetizers for entertaining, using ingredients they have on hand. The creative possibilities are endless! As a tasty finale, students prepare and sample some hot and cold crostini in the lab! Yum!

Manners & Tablesetting: Breakout Style Reveiw Game

Breakout games are so much fun! It’s hard to imagine that something so fun can also be educational! Breakout games encourage students to work together, against the clock to complete challenges associated with a topic you are covering in class. Breakout games can be used as a way to introduce a lesson or unit or it can be a culminating review activity before a test. Either way, students love them! I tried my hand at creating one for reviewing manners, calculating tips and how to set the common table. Give it a try and I hope your students like it as much as mine did! Warning: This can get extremely competitive!