If you know much about DAA, you probably know that nutrition and healthy eating is a huge part of our school culture. We eat extremely nutritional lunches (which are also SUPER yummy!) that are planned by a nutrition and foods specialist. We also provide a year-long foods curriculum to our students, which is something no other school in the country offers. And I get to teach it! Teaching foods has been an extremely interesting and educational experience. When I hear things like “Peas come from cotton” and “Meat is made by machines in factories” at the beginning of our units, it’s always very neat to watch these statements transform into the process from which milk gets from the cow to the store, complete with a kindergartner being able to explain what pasteurization is.
We started the year with a unit exploring each of the food groups. We touched, smelled, observed and tasted foods from each of the five food groups. After the initial introduction, we dove into a deeper investigation of each food group. In November and December, we learned about the dairy group. We started by learning which foods were actually in the dairy group and how dairy keeps our body healthy. Next we learned how milk gets from the cow to our lunches at school. We read Milk, from Cow to Carton by Aliki. As we read, we recorded ALL the steps. Then we watched some videos that show the process at real dairy farms. We cemented our knowledge in our own personal books showing the milk process. As a concluding project, we had our DAA Board Member and Nutrition Expert, Megan Moynihan, came in and taught us how to make mozzarella. As you can see in the picture, it was a great success!