I moved!

I moved! You can find me at my new online home, KaylaPins.com!

Friday, August 30, 2013

A Tomato For the Teacher

Has a much better ring to it than "apple," yes?

We talk about gardening and composting a lot in my class, so my students are always eager to share their produce with me.

I currently have a student that has never seen (or obviously tried) zucchini.  I am sure my plants will have plenty to share!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

When it's too hot to do anything but cook eggs on a sidewalk...

...then it's time to drop your lesson plans and cook eggs on a sidewalk.
We have dismissed at 1:00 every afternoon this week. Even so, my classroom is already 85 degrees by my last class.

I got tired of looking at zombie-eyed students so I divided them into groups, gave them a square of foil and an egg, and sent them outside.  I told them they had 20 minutes to cook the egg.  They could put the egg and arrange the foil anywhere they wanted.

Twenty minutes later we came out to check on the eggs. Only a few of them had started cooking the whites. Perhaps our egg experiment was a flop, but it was a good way to get out and enjoy the breeze!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Non-Traditional Classroom Funding... A.K.A Embrace Your Retro-Groovy Classroom Kitchens!

Like most FCS classrooms in old schools, my room is in need want of an update. Please don't take away my metal cabinets, (but a little paint would be nice) but some insulation, ventilation, and temperature regulation would be much appreciated!

I so love my job, my school, and my administration.  I try not to complain about trivial things like orange paint!

I have recently embraced the retro-grooviness of my kitchen with an Ebay sale. If your kitchens are also awesome, you may find some collectables you didn't know you have.

This Jadite mug sold for $13.65,
 This Pyrex bowl for $15.75,
 And this set of stainless Imperial cutlery for $3.97.
I have some other items that I will re-list and hope for better luck next week!

I'm saving for some fun accessories for our cake decorating unit.  I get some talented students in here who would like to try sugar work, fondant, and gum paste.  I feel bad using department money to buy such indulgent things, so finding extra cash is awesome.

What kind of cash do you have hiding in your classroom cupboards?

Monday, August 26, 2013

Teach Proper Hand Washing Skills with Raw Potatoes: An Update

Some tasty visuals to get you started today... Daily pictures of our handwashing potatoes!

And the creme de la creme: This morning!
A control potato:
Our cleanest "clean" potato:
And our slimiest, grimiest, dirtiest dirty potato:
Yum, yum!

This is my favorite safety and sanitation activity!  It really grosses out the students.  I find it makes them much more liberal with the hand sanitizer and tolerant of the sanitizing wipes.

These potatoes will still be on the wall for two days...

Friday, August 23, 2013

Remember Symptoms of Food Borne Illness With the Pepto Bismal Dance

I had a student come visit me today.  He was in Food and Nutrition in the first term of my first year teaching.  He needed a copy of my ever-popular monster cookie recipe.

By the way, my monster cookie recipe is AWESOME! I use it to teach measuring skills in Food and Nutrition and have never had a failed batch.

On his way out the door, he asked if I really did the Pepto Bismal dance the day before. Of course I did, and I happily demonstrated it for him.

I teach my kids the Pepto Bismal dance to teach the symptoms of food borne illness.  They think it is hilarious... and very strange.  But they always remember the symptoms!

I found a YouTube video to demonstrate it for you.  Give it a try!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Kitchen Safety Guest Speaker

Today my students enjoyed a guest speaker from the local fire department.  He shared a great example of what water does to a grease fire:
The video also shows a fire extinguishing product that mounts above a stove and drops powder if melted.  It would be a great addition to your classroom kitchens.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Yeast Balloon Blow Up to Demonstrate Bacteria Multiplying at Room Temperature

As part of our discussion on food borne illness, I did an experiment to demonstrate how bacteria multiplies at room temperature.  I got the idea from FightBac.org resources which I told you about yesterday.  I also show it with my Safety and Sanitation Power Point and Numbers to Know Prezi.

Some modifications for this time around...
  • I didn't mess with the bowls of water.  I simply left one bottle at room temperature and put one in the fridge.
  • I had no sugar so I used corn syrup.  It's a good reminder for students to see what they are drinking in soda!
  • I mixed the ingredients right in the bottle instead of messing with a separate beaker.
We observed the bottles at 10 minutes:

20 minutes:
Thirty minutes:
And 45 minutes.
Because bacteria are invisible it is great to have such a visual reminder of the importance of cooling food quickly!

Numbers to Know: Temperatures for Food Safety and Sanitation

I am always surprised at how little students know about temperature.  Last year in Bakery I had my students test their thermometers by placing them in boiling water.  Trouble is, they didn't know what temperature water should be boiling at!

This term in Food and Nutrition I will emphasize temperatures more.  I created this Prezi for a visual.  Students will write the numbers in their study guide and be expected to know them all term.

My Prezi is editable so you can make your own copy.  Some of our textbooks differ in their interpretation of the "Danger Zone" or the exact temperature that meat must be cooked to.

This is a really fun lesson.  I bring freeze pops for the students and talk about freezing temperatures.  We'll do the Prezi and then the Yeast Balloon Blow Up and Cooling Counts activities from the FightBac.org resource. You will find the activities detailed in the 4-8 curriculum.  Although most of my students are Freshman, they still like the visual of the inflated yeast balloons.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Teach Proper Hand Washing With Raw Potatoes

Check out this nastiness on my bulletin board wall!

This activity is one of my favorites and the students really enjoy it too. It is a great way to demonstrate germs that students carry on their hands, even when they appear clean. I used the potato hand washing activity with my Foods and Nutrition students today but the message is simple enough for all ages to understand.

You can purchase chemicals and sprays that make germs on hands “glow,” but those are expensive and unnecessary. All you need for this activity is three potatoes and three sandwich bags.

Begin by peeling the three potatoes (compost the peels!) and scrub them for 30 seconds with hand soap.

Put one potato in a bag as the control.

Pass the next potato around the class. Encourage the students to rub their hands all over the potato.

Demonstrate proper hand washing: Scrubbing nails, tops, bottoms, and betweens, wrists, etc. Also, scrub for a complete 30 seconds.

After the students have touched the “dirty” potato, send the students to the kitchens to practice hand washing.

After the students have washed their hands, pass around the last potato.

We'll be observing these over the next week. I'll keep you posted with updates! (Gross!)

*Update* See daily pictures of the potatoes here.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Welcome, Students!

I'm so excited for my first day of school!  Here's to no sleeping tonight... or for the next 9 months! :)

Food & Nutrition Syllabus

It's already the start of a new school year!  I am happy to be back and am looking forward to this term.  I am teaching three sections of my favorite class, Food and Nutrition.

One of the first things we do in every class is share the syllabus.  You can find my Food and Nutrition syllabus here.

While my I am not a believer in the "Don't smile until Christmas" advice, my syllabi tend to be pretty strict.  I like to cover all of my bases.

Some highlights include...

  • Workmanship.  All work will be labeled and no "Txt" slang will be accepted.  I would never throw away an assignment based on this, but students need a gentle reminder.
  • Electronics policy. I handle each incidence on a case-by-case basis but have a strict policy in the syllabus.
  • Dress code. Every teacher handles this differently so I like to discuss it right away.
Okay, vets...
  • What makes your syllabi unique?
  • What additions have you made to your syllabi over the years?