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Cookin'

Middle School ILAP

Author:  Jeremy Taylor, Harlowton H.S.

Co-authors:  Mark Smillie, Carroll College & St. Andrews School
Margie Brodowy, St. Andrews School

Disciplines:
Math- planning, comparative shopping, percentages, fractions, estimation
Computers- graphics, word processing, web page design
Science- nutrition, food groups

Introduction:
Students have always asked their teachers the question, "Why do we need to know this?" or "How will we use this in real life?".  This ILAP is designed to answer this question for several areas of learning.  Home cookin' will integrate math, computers, and science (and any other discipline that you would like to add) to show that preparing a simple meal has many implications in the "Real World."  Students will use and discover ideas related, but not limited to, the disciplines mentioned above.  Enjoy and good eating!

Step 1:
First we need to find out about proper nutrition and the basic food groups.  We will need to follow these
guidelines when choosing our meal.

In the early 1990s, the long-standing, traditional basic four food groups, consisting of meat, dairy products, grains, and fruits and vegetables, were reworked into the more balanced and healthy food guide pyramid. This pyramid has as its base the grain group; on the second level are the fruit and vegetable groups; on the third level are the meat and dairy groups; and at the top is the fats, oils, and sweets group.

Grains
At the base of the food guide pyramid are breads, cereals, rice, pasta, and
other foods made from grain. Human beings need more daily servings of
these foods than any others because grain-based foods provide B
vitamins, iron, carbohydrates, and some protein. Six or more daily
servings are recommended. A serving, for example, is one slice of bread,
one ounce (28 grams) of dry cereal, or one half cup of cooked pasta.
Fruits & Vegetables
The sources of most vitamins and minerals belong to these two groups.
They also provide fiber, which contains no nutrients but aids in moving
food through the digestive system. Three to five servings of vegetables
and two to four servings of fruit should be eaten every day. One half cup of
any fruit or vegetable counts as one serving.
Dairy & Meat
Products
On this level are two groups of foods, such as milk, cheese, poultry, fish,
and eggs, that come mostly from animals; notable exceptions are nuts
and dried beans. These groups are quite high in protein, calcium, iron,
phosphorus, the B vitamins, and zinc. Two to three servings from each
group are recommended daily. Eight ounces (227 grams) of milk or 3
ounces (85 grams) of meat, for example, count as a serving.
Fats, Oils, & Sweets
The top of the pyramid includes foods that may add pleasure to eating but
provide only calories and little nutritional benefit to one's diet. These foods
include salad dressings, cream, butter, margarine, sugars, soft drinks,
and candies. They should be eaten only sparingly. The American Heart
Association recommends that no more than 30 percent of one's daily
calories be derived from fat.

How can a person have so many servings?  The average person eats about three meals a day.  Decide as a group how you will account for these things.

Step 2:
Decide on the items that you will prepare and make a shopping list with estimated costs based on the recipes for each item.  You will need to look at the recipe for each item to find out how much of each item you will need.  You may need to double, triple, or even cut your recipe in half based on the number in your family (including yourself).

Example

 Item Estimated Costs 1 head of lettuce \$1.00 1 bottle salad dressing \$2.00 4 banana's (banana splits) \$1.50

Step 3:
Because your funds are limited (\$5 per family member including yourself), we want to find the best deals on each item.  To do this we will choose 2 or 3 stores in our town and compare prices at each store.  If you do not have more than one store in your town, try finding an on-line store.

Example- You can create your own table for the comparative shopping using any spreadsheet program.

 Item Store X Store Y Store Z Best Deal 8 oz. tomato paste \$0.69 \$0.65 \$0.59 Store Z (\$0.59)

After finding the cheapest items, plan your shopping trip to save the most money.  You need to remember distance and gas use to decide if driving across town will actually save you any money.  The car that you will be driving gets 30 mpg and gas is currently \$1.25/gal.  Are there any other costs that you may want to consider that may influence your decisions?

Step 4:
Calculate the total costs for the items on your list.  Add in the sales tax if applicable in your city or state.

Example- A 2% sales tax on a \$2.50 item will increase the cost to....

X           =        2%
\$2.50                100

X + \$2.50=?

If your total is greater than the amount you have to spend, you will need to go back and readjust your menu.

Step 5:
Use a word processor or graphics program to design an invitation (with menu) for your family.  They will be joining you at your house at a certain time and date determined by your teacher.  Be creative!

Step 6:
At home, cook the meal for your family.  You will want someone to help you do this (preferably an adult).  Be very careful in the kitchen!  A great idea would be to photo or video tape the occasion.  What did you learn about cooking?

Step 7:
Compile your class recipes in categories such as meats, desserts, etc., and create a class cookbook web site.  Each student will be in charge of a page for each item on their menu.  This can also be accomplished in a variety of other fashions.  There are many web page editors available to accomplish this task, and you don't need the Internet to make class web pages.

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