Stress & Coloring: Good Idea? Bad Idea?

Students love to doodle! Children love to color! Adult coloring books are everywhere! The theory behind this phenomenon is that it is a way to relax and decompress, in addition to being a creative outlet. So, is this really a good way to deal with stress or just a trendy way to promote a product? This lesson focuses on stress, and has students investigating this theory by researching and application before deciding whether it’s a good idea or a bad idea!

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Periodic Table of Fruits & Vegetables

Looking to incorporate the “farm to table” concept into the fruit and vegetable unit of her 9-12 Basic Foods class, Liz Odle, a teacher at North Platte High School, Nebraska did just that by creating the Periodic Table of Fruits & Vegetables project!  A colleague helped her iron out the details and the project was created to accommodate new standards as well as 90 minute periods.  This lesson is not only informative, but engaging, and when complete, creates a large periodic table display that is hung in the hall for all students to view!  See how she teaches this entire unit below.

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Deciphering Apartment Lingo

Finding an apartment, understanding the lingo and reading a lease should be skills that all young adults know how to do as they take on adulting responsibilities! I begin this lesson by having students decipher some common abbreviations that I’ve seen/heard used via an interactive game. Students then move onto deciphering actual apartment lingo, work with sample ads, read the classifieds (which may be foreign to some students) and eventually read and answer some questions pertaining to an apartment lease. This at least gives them an idea of what’s involved when the time comes for them to actually find an apartment!

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Stoplight Foods & Jenga Review Game

The stoplight is such a simple traffic device, but has a universal meaning to pedestrians and drivers in the world of transportation. You may also be familiar with this concept in the nutrition world as it was introduced a few years ago as “Go-Slow-Whoa” or “Stoplight Nutrition”. In order to reinforce healthy food choices, why not implement the universal meaning of the stoplight into an interactive Jenga game?  It’s a simple way to reinforce healthy food choices for all age groups.

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Age Appropriate Toys– Activity

What child doesn’t like playing with toys?  When my children were young, they received a lot of toys from family and friends.  Some of those toys were appropriate and safe for their age and abilities and others were too advanced and were put back for a later time.  To some people, toys are toys and safety, age and ability play no part in their selection.  I like to provide my students with an overview of the types of toys recommended for each age and stage of a child’s early years.  After discussing some criteria to keep in mind, the best way to evaluate or analyze a toy for age appropriateness is to actually play with them. So, the toy stations go up and the big kids “play” and utilize their resources to help them determine the toy’s age/stage and justify their answer.  This is always a fun activity as students see and explore new toys they’ve never had or played with, along with reminiscing about those they did play with, as youngsters!   No toys?  No worries as I’ve included an alternate activity to accomplish the same thing!

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The Job Interview TV Series

If you teach anything about job interviews, you may want to consider using an episode from the television series The Job Interview.  This show takes an inside look at potential employees as they interview for a specific job.  Students get to see firsthand what the interviewees are wearing, how they act and how they respond to specific questions and problems. Employers react and discuss how each candidate’s mannerisms and answers impact their decisions.  This show offers many great discussion points and easily holds the attention of high school students.

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