Food Science Introduction

The latest project that I have been working on is my introduction to food science unit. The class is called Food Products and Processing Systems. I hope to base more of the class in chemistry focused labs. I will still be having my class make some of the classic meat products that we have before but pull out and explain some of the chemistry concepts that exist. The way I am structuring my units next year is to begin the unit with a vocabulary game or support. Each unit plan I hand out has an Essential Vocabulary list. The students need to first make a study aid with the vocabulary. Some of the study aids include flash cards, vocabulary booklets, word webs, or a definition chart. In each unit there is a vocabulary worksheet for the students to practice the words. In food science more often than not it is to rewrite a recipe or write a new recipie using the vocabulary words.

The textbook that I am using is Principles of Food Science by Janet D. Ward. I am also using Mastering the Craft of Making Sausage and Mastering the Craft of Smoking Food by Warren R Anderson. Another resource I use is the National FFA Poultry Judging Manual. I use the USDA grading manuals for each livestock species as needed.

The activities for this unit are growing mold and making ice cream sundaes. The growing mold will help the students understand how microbial growth occurs. The ice cream sundaes is a food that has many parts and steps.  The ice cream sundae activity is to learn the 7 steps of HACCP. At the beginning of the week introduce food science by just making ice cream sundaes willy nilly. At the end of the week make the sundaes only after it’s decided how they should be built using HACCP. During the debate on how to make the sundaes make a flow chart for decision making. One big factor that I can think of is take the ice cream out of the freezer at the beginning of class and don’t make the sundae until the end of the class. Good forshadowing of a freezerburn study.

PrinciplesofFoodScience-FoodSafety – Unit Plan


Summer Scope and Sequences

Yesterday I tasked myself with finishing off the scope and sequences of my summer classes. Additionally, I made a unit plan for my “Filling the Cupboard: A course in Modern Gardening Practices and Community Service”. The community that I work in has many opportunities for gardening projects. There was once a Community Gardening Club before I arrived as the Ag Teacher. Now, it seems that the wave of interest in backyard agriculture has arrived. However, in a town that does have rusty tractors, brand new tractors, and farms literally in town “backyard” agriculture can involve a great many things.

When planning the “Summer Sausage” class. Timing was everything. I needed to choose recipes that were in the butter zone of difficulty. The recipe for Summer Sausage includes an ingredient called Fermento. This whey based product gives the flavor of fermentation without the lengthy process. I also wanted to make foods that students could take home, or eat at the end of the course. During the school year my Food Products and Processing students create batches of 25-40 pounds of meat product. The summer school recipes are very minimal and max out at 10 lbs. This way I can assign the advanced students to work on their own with products and I can work together with a few of the beginning level students.

Filling the Cupboard: Unit Plan

Filling the Cupboard: Scope and Sequence

Summer Sausage: Scope and Sequence

Today I will begin working on revising and reflecting on the courses I have taught this last school year. One of the biggest errors for the coursework was timing. I had a new suite of classes to teach all year. This meant new lessons and many new textbooks. My Dairy Science class fell behind because of the great detail put into their unit plans. My Introduction to Agriculture course at times was too introductory. I will be leaving Introduction to Ag as the final class to revise. This way I will have an idea of what to introduce. With the summer school courses soon underway I will start with the sophomore targeted class of Food Products and Processing Systems.

Teach Ag Daily, Preparing for the Summer

Teach Ag Daily, blog is about the classroom activities, improvements, and improvisations of lessons. The goal of the blog is to create better lessons through reflection and the recording of activities. Today’s goal is to visit a few graduation parties and between the parties finalize plans for the two summer school courses I will be teaching. The first course is “Filling the Cupboard: a course in modern gardening practices and community service”. The main activity for this course will be setting up a community garden at the local food pantry. The food produced in these gardens will be for the people who are in need of fresh vegetables. The second course is called “Summer Sausage”. This course will teach students the basics of preparing different meat products. After polling the students this last week, they are really interested in jerky and snack sticks. The class will also be making bratwurst  for the summer FFA activities.