This semester I am asking my grade 8s – “What leads to healthy eating?” The grade 8 foods and nutrition rotation lasts for roughly 20-25 days. We set aside almost half of our time together to work on these inquiry projects. Students were asking to plan and implement each step of their projects, showing the process of their thoughts and reflect on potential transformations in various ways. The 6 step process that many are familiar with (and is used widely in our amazing Inquiry 8 program) includes: Planning, Retrieving, Processing, Creating, Sharing, and Evaluating. Students were at the heart of each step of this reflective process and produced unique takes on the question. What I loved about this process with this class was the ability for students to ask questions about the big question – instead of prescribing a set of questions for students to regurgitate (What are the main food groups? How many servings should you have of each food group per day? What food group do peas belong to? Which nutrients are in eggs?) students came up with their own research topics to break down the big question (What is the connection between education and healthy eating? What aspects of food education are essential? What are those essential aspects? How are they organized? Why are they important?). Through their research – retrieving information, choosing information, organizing information – they were able to synthesize their facts and in turn, CREATE something new to represent their learning of the material. I capitalize “create” because most often we may end at the retrieval/choice of information dimension and simply expect students to slap facts on a poster board and present their findings to the class. It will become evident in the project examples below that these students really got the hang of the creating and sharing process. I am so proud of this first group.
Finally to the person that told us all at the provincial Home Economics conference that Inquiry in Home Economics is not possible – please take some time to enjoy these projects.
For teachers: I have also included the initial planning sheet at the very bottom of this post!
Yunny, Janna, and Muskan – LEGO Stop Motion
Woojin’s – Web of Healthy Eating
Renee, Teagan, and Meigan – Stop Motion Piece
Click HERE to view Celina’s blog post
Kiana – Healthy Eating