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.
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.