Category: Professional Development

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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Capsule Wardrobes

Capsule Wardrobes seem to be the latest trend in shopping and not just for the minimalists who strive to eliminate the excess! I decided to have my students explore this trend, create their own capsule wardrobe collection for a specific season and budget range as well as promote it through an infomercial using apps such as Polyvore and iMovie. Students were highly engaged as they looked for pieces to create their collection and somewhat frustrated as they had to revise when prices exceeded their budget range! Overall, a great practical lesson and project, simulating real life practices (except for the infomercial–that was just a fun, creative way to share their collections with the entire class)!

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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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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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Teacher of the Month: Donna Cabrera

Congratulations to this month’s teacher of the month, Donna Cabrera, a Family & Consumer Sciences Middle School teacher from Pennsylvania. While this is her first year teaching FACS, she is no stranger to the classroom, having taught Special Education for 10 years.

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Spin a Stir-Fry Lesson & Lab

Need quick cooking recipes for your foods labs or dinner at home on a busy night? I know I do! That’s why I teach about stir-fry cooking! Not only is stir-fry cooking quick and easy, but it’s nutritious, colorful and fairly easy to clean up. So, after students investigate some basics of stir-fry cookery, they get to spin themselves a unique recipe for the class to sample. Try spinning yourself a stir-fry. Who knows, you might just find a new favorite, easy-to-go-to dinner!

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Plating & Styling Brownies

My students always want to make fancy desserts and who can blame them! This lesson teaches them a little about plating and styling foods, using brownie desserts to help accomplish the mission! After learning about plating and styling desserts, students practice by making, plating and styling brownies. They also must create a feature for a restaurant menu based on their results! I like this lesson, activity and lab because it’s a great mix of activities. Plus, students get to use technology, create food, apply creativity and eat all in one lesson! My students loved this and were super proud of their accomplishments…I’m confident yours will too!

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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.

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Types of Fat: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

Fats can be very confusing to teach because there are so many different types; some that are good, some that are bad, and some that are downright ugly for your health and body. I wanted to teach my students about the different types of fats in an interactive and simplistic way. So, below you will find ways to teach about fats which can be used as is or easily be adapted for use in an interactive note book. In addition, you will find a lab incorporating a healthy fat that also ties directly into the advice of MyPlate, encouraging the consumption of seafood.

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Fashion Designer Tribute

Students research famous fashion designers and showcase their major designs in this interactive assignment. Students pay tribute to their fashion designer by creating new, original pieces inspired by the works of their designer. Students then present and share their designer with the rest of the class. Any part of this project can be used for instant bulletin board displays or hang the sketches and see if students can “name the designer” based on the drawings.

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