Hi and welcome back to Attentionology for K – 5 Teachers!
Do you and your students love chocolate? If the answer is yes, this project is a recipe for:
- catching kids’ attention
- supporting a S.T.E.M. curriculum
As you may well know, S.T.E.M. stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. S.T.E.M. is tied to the Common Core Curriculum that has been adopted by 45 states in the US and the District of Columbia.
If you live and work in a part of the world where Common Core is not your focus, chances are that your curriculum still includes units to help students develop skills in science and math. Let’s get cooking…
Chocolate Lovers Story Project Goals and Objectives:
- For teachers following the Common Core – help students in grades 3 – 5 understand the basic science, technology, engineering and math behind the making of chocolate.
- For educators everywhere – use the tempting “taste” of chocolate and children’s love of the treat to engage them in science and math studies.
- For all teachers of grades 1 – 5 – Integrate writing into your science and math curriculum. Chocolate Lovers Story Project is best suited to grades 3 – 5, but can become Chocolate Lovers Poetry Project for grades 1 – 2, to work with shorter-form writing…
Yummy to eat;
My favorite treat!
Oodles of information is available online about chocolate! The following Chocolate Lovers Story Project Steps may help you get started…1) Set a term, like one week, for the project.
2) Make a poster for the project to center on a bulletin board where you will post students’ “chocolate writing” when their work is complete.
3) Hang up the poster on the day you plan to announce the project.
4) If your school allows this, put a small chocolate treat on each student’s desk before class on the morning you announce the start of the project. Treats are sure-fire
5) Explain to the class that over the term of the Chocolate Lovers Story Project they will learn about:
♦ the origins of chocolate
♦ the farming of the cacao bean (from which chocolate is derived) around the world
6) Announce that after the class learns about chocolate, through lessons that you lead and independent research (if you decide to include a research component), students will be writing stories about chocolate.
7) Tell students that the story writing will come later, but note-taking is advised as they learn about chocolate.
8) Encourage students to begin finding photographs and illustrations from print media and/or online that they can incorporate into their written work.
9) Point to your new Chocolate Lovers Story Project Bulletin Board and announce that you plan to post finished student stories on the board.
10) Tell the class that you have a special treat to share at the conclusion of the project. (Plan a treat that your school allows. If distributing chocolate treats is not permitted, create or find a template for “Chocolate Bookmarks” to give students.)
Chocolate Lovers Story Festival – Host an in-class festival to celebrate the conclusion of this project. Optional: Invite parents to attend.
Plan the festival in three parts:
- Brief Study Review – Lead the class in a brief review that “hits” the highlights of the S.T.E.M.of chocolate.
- Story Presentations – Invite volunteering students to read their chocolate stories aloud. (This part of festival may have to carry over to a second day.)
- Distribution of chocolate treats – Close festival by giving students chocolate or chocolate-related treats of your choice.
Recipes for teaching that literally taste good are proven tools for engaging students in learning. Fun and function – great ingredients for elementary school classrooms.
Remember you don’t need to be a magician to work magic in any instructional setting!
Want more magic for your classroom? Please subscribe to attentionology.com and send comments that I can share.
Look for Mid-Week Focus on Wednesday to feature the second part of International Festival of Attention-Grabbers – UK & US. Find out more about “Playlosophy” and how play benefits children in so many ways.
Talk with you again soon,
Barbara ♥ The Lovable Poet