Category: Foods & Nutrition

The Digestion Project

There is a huge emphasis on student directed learning and that meant that I would need to change the way I taught digestion. Sure, I could teach the process, all the organs and their functions to my students in a PPT and then give them a test, but that would not be very engaging, creative or student directed in any way. So, below is the new way I will be having my students learn about digestion.

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Teaching About Food Waste

This is a topic I’ve wanted to teach for a long time, not only because I practice it, but think it’s an important lesson for everyone to know and implement in their lives! However, that said, I was also a bit nervous introducing this lesson because I didn’t know how my students would receive it. Would they think it interesting and practical? Would they think it old-fashioned and a thing of the past? Would they even engage? Well, I can honestly say that my students were totally with me throughout this entire lesson! They shared personal stories and examples! They embraced the topic and were quite interested in the articles and stories I had them use, as well as the projects they were assigned! In the future and for the record, I will definitely be teaching this unit again, but this time with complete confidence!

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Food Origin Project

In the Ethnic Foods class, students study all of the regions of the world. The course begins with “Why do we Eat the Foods we Eat?” This lesson was created to stimulate the ‘investigative minds’ of students, encouraging them to ask questions and seek answers. In the study of American Culture, each region is celebrated with an authentic foods lab. This project was created to get students to understand the influence of other cultures on our own American favorites.

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Nutrient Stations

When I created QR Code Stations in my child development class to learn about newborn care, I had no idea that they would be such a hit! My students really like getting out of their seats, moving from station to station in order to learn about various topics. So, I decided to give it a try with the essential six nutrients and the results proved to be successful once again. So, below you will find a new lesson about the essential six nutrients, utilizing the infamous QR Codes!

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Dietary Guideline Challenge Activities

Most FACS teachers are familiar with the Dietary Guidelines and know that they are reviewed and revised, if necessary, every five years. Students, on the other hand, are not as familiar with this concept. Unfortunately, it can be a difficult concept to teach, not because it’s complicated, but because it can be “dry” subject matter! In the past, when trying to teach this concept, students would get this distant, glazed look over their faces indicating to me that I was losing them! This “look” prompted me to develop something more interactive and student driven before even attempting to discuss the dietary guidelines, especially since we are a 1:1 school. This post shares those activities so you too can avoid the “look”! If you have additional, activities for teaching this concept, please share in the comment section below.

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Food Safety Actions: Breakout Notes Activity

I think I love breakout activities almost as much as my students do! So, I thought I’d try my hand at another one, using it as a way for students to acquire their notes regarding food safety actions. In this breakout, students must put the puzzles together that form their notes, complete the notes form and scan for a number to help them eventually open their box. In this breakout, only one box per group is used and within it contains a scenarios activity that utilizes the notes students just spent time obtaining. The boxes also contain a small treat that students may eat while completing their scenario assignment. How do you use breakouts in the classroom? I’d love to hear your ideas, so please share in the comments section below!

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Salads in a Jar

One of my classes was on the small side this year so I asked them if there was anything in particular they wanted to learn about regarding food. They very promptly provided me with a list! I wish I could get some of their assignments that quickly! LOL! Anyway, one of the items on their list was salads…in a jar! Having been to a salad in a jar party where each person brought an ingredient to share, I thought this would be a fun lesson and lab to put together. I also thought I’d try my hand at putting the lesson together as a HyperDoc where students could work their way through the background information in an independent, self-directed way. Even if you don’t feel comfortable giving students the HyperDoc, I find it’s a great way to keep myself and my resources organized!

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Fidget Spinner App & Kitchen Review Activities

If you can’t beat ’em, you might as well join ’em! Fidget spinners are all the rage, not to mention the bane of most teachers! However, if students are interested in them, why not use them as part of an educational activity? Below you will find two review resources that use spinners to help students learn common kitchen measuring abbreviations, conversions and tools. If not all of your students have access to fidget spinners and you don’t want to actually purchase these devices, there is a free app you can utilize in order to take advantage of this, hopefully, short-lived fad. In the meantime, use it in a constructive way to help keep students engaged and attentive!

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The Thrill of the Grill: A Comparison Shopping Project & Chicken Kabob Lab

Not sure if this happens to you are not, but when I have guys in a foods class, their foremost requests are “Can we cook meat?” and “Can we go outside?” So in the spring of the year, when we are nearing the end of the school year, I try to honor these requests. But to make it practical, I give them a comparison shopping assignment, shared with me by FACS teacher Amanda Swallow. Students have to investigate gas grills and make a decision as to what they’d purchase. After all, it is a large item purchase so they wouldn’t just want to buy the first model they see. Following that project, we do discuss the difference between indoor and outdoor grilling, including pros/cons, options and safety before preparing a Chicken Kabob lab! So, how do you teach grilling in your classroom? Please share ideas in the comment section below.

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The English Muffin Challenge

The English Muffin Challenge was a spur of the moment lab! One of our school clubs had two packages of English Muffins left over from an event that they generously donated to us. In addition, I had several left over ingredients from some other labs that I didn’t want to waste. So, I threw it all together for a challenge lab! Students had 40 minutes to create an aesthetic, edible product using the English Muffin and following the parameters of the challenge. Overall, the results were successful, albeit some interesting! However, students walked away knowing they could put together a filling dish, using only available leftovers. The beauty of this type of lab is that the challenge and follow-up assignment could revolve around any food you have an abundance of and wish to use up!

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