Using Food as a Tool to Teach Science to 3rd-grade Students In Appalachian Ohio 2010

Authors:Duffrin MW1, Hovland J, Carraway-Stage V, McLeod S, Duffrin C, Phillips S, Rivera D, Saum D, Johanson G, Graham A, Lee T, Bosse M, Berryman D.
Type:Project Generated
PMID:20975982 , PMCID:PMC2958667

Food, Science, Nutrition, Elementary Education, Teacher Training

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The Food, Math, and Science Teaching Enhancement Resource (FoodMASTER) Initiative is a compilation of programs aimed at using food as a tool to teach mathematics and science. In 2007 to 2008, a foods curriculum developed by professionals in nutrition and education was implemented in 10 3rd-grade classrooms in Appalachian Ohio; teachers in these classrooms implemented 45 hands-on foods activities that covered 10 food topics. Subjects included measurement; food safety; vegetables; fruits; milk and cheese; meat, poultry, and fish; eggs; fats; grains; and meal management. Students in 4 other classrooms served as the control group. Mainstream 3rd-grade students were targeted because of their receptiveness to the subject matter, science standards for upper elementary grades, and testing that the students would undergo in 4th grade. Teachers and students alike reported that the hands-on FoodMASTER curriculum experience was worthwhile and enjoyable. Our initial classroom observation indicated that the majority of students, girls and boys included, were very excited about the activities, became increasingly interested in the subject matter of food, and were able to conduct scientific observations.