Pumpkin Pie, Applesauce and Potato Chips: Opportunities to Connect to Classroom Objectives

In November of 2007, Garden Rep Jen Pultz orchestrated a pumpkin-pie-from-scratch project and trained parent help. The project was offered to all teachers and many signed up for this six hour pie-making experience.

During the time Jen read to students, every child prepared the fresh pumpkin, made and rolled the pie crust, filled the shell, and finally topped the freshly baked pies with whipped cream. The smell of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and clove filled Atkinson’s halls as the pies baked.

Jen Pultz returned the next fall to offer a classroom applesauce-making demonstration to interested teachers. 4th/5th grade teacher Tessa Luk saw this as an opportunity for the students to practice expository writing. Ms. Luk directed the students to observe carefully, asking them to keep notes on the sequence of steps and vocabulary introduced while watching applesauce preparation and listening to books Jen read about the topic.

Jen showed them apple varieties and many students were able to identify the different types because they remembered the apple tasting in Mrs. Moist’s class the year before. Students created graphic organizers outlining the steps involved. From these, they wrote drafts and eventually revised work to completion. The children finished the process by creating oil pastel drawings of the varieties of apples.

That same year, other classes made various recipes from food harvested that fall. These included bruschetta, salsa, and potato chips.

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