Using the Internet to Support Teaching and Learning
7 December, 1998
This project is to inform and motivate students about their role as food preparation specialists in the prevention of foodborne illness. Food safety is no longer confined to the kitchen; it is a current event today. It is a daily topic in the news, from food recalls to E- coli contamination. Students must become aware that their own food preparation skills are equally important as those of the IBP worker, the food handler at Gerber, or the griller at Burger King. Basic daily cleanliness and food handling practices are the bottom line in food safety today whether the food is prepared commercially or in the home kitchen.
In order to relate this global effect of food safety to the students' individual food preparation practices, I chose to use the Internet with this project. Not only will this allow them to reinforce the skills emphasized and practiced in the classroom, it will afford them the opportunity to research causes and symptoms of foodborne illnesses as a result of unsafe food handling. My hope is that this will increase their knowledge and retention of material, so that it will be applied in class, at home, and for some, in the workplace.
An epidemic has hit our high school! Or has it?
Many students and staff contracted the flu last Tuesday evening. All were recovered by late Wednesday or Thursday. After further research, these facts were held in common:
•all were in school on Tuesday
•all purchase school lunch (Thanksgiving dinner) Tuesday noon
•all had similar symptoms
•all developed said symptoms Tuesday evening between 8 and 10 p.m.
What do you think?
Your task is to
•assess the problem and come up with a hypothesis to explain the outbreak,
•research one of the bacteria leading to a foodborne illness that may have been responsible, and
•present solutions to prevent this situation from recurring here or happening at home or on the job.
Your plan will include:
•Informational brochure /trifold/pocket informant describing each foodborne illness, its symptoms, and safeguards for prevention.
•Rap, rhythm, or song to assist fellow students to remember food safety tips.
•Your theory regarding the epidemic that hit our high school.
In order to complete this task you will research a foodborne illness and how it is spread and manifests itself. After researching your topic, you will compile this information into an attractive trifold that can be used as a "pocket informant" resource. This will be an individual project.
From the information you researched you will also analyze the facts you know
to theorize the cause of this epidemic.
As a group of 3-4, you will create a rap, rhyme, or song about a concept pertinent to food safety and perform it for your peers.
Individually you will need to gather information from a variety of sources such as:
•Print resources from the LRC
1) Iowa State Extension Food Safety Project
This site provides information about food safety precautions, foodborne pathogens, and consumer tips for controlling foodborne problems and steps to a safe kitchen . It also includes a quiz which is immediately scored for students to evaluate the information they've learned in this session.
2) USDA Food Safety & Inspection Service
This site emphasizes wise food purchasing skills, safe food preparation, and the students' safety risks. It also includes "Food Risks: Perception vs. Reality" a series of 8 self-directed mini-lessons about food risks. It also includes a check-out quiz.
3) National Food Safety Database
This site offers a variety of food safety resources, but what the student should focus on here is the slideshow that explains/demonstrates implications of safe food handling practices.
4) Food Safety Homepage
This site offers educator and student resources and activities pertaining to food safety.
5) Holiday Food Safety Tips
This site is more "food specific" in terms of offering specific food preparation tips for individual holiday foods. It answers questions regarding purchase, thawing (as needed), preparation, cooking, serving, and storage of leftovers. Many holiday foods, however, create the greatest food safety risks.
Text: Shugart, Grace and Mary Molt. Food for Fifty. New York: Mac Millan, 1989.
Learning Resource Center:
Winter, R. Poisons in Your Food. Willowbrook Press, 1991.
Salter, Charles A. Food Risks and Controversies; Managing the Dangers in Your Diet. 1993.
Jones, Norman H., et al., eds. Role of Food in America. 1992.
Mitchell, Margaret, et all, eds. Nutrition; On the Road to Good Health. 1995.
Possibilities may include food service personnel, such as district food service director, hospital dietitian, restaurant owner or manager, and/or manager of meat or grocery department. Create possible questions for group to review by Tuesday class time.
From the information you have gathered, you will develop a trifold (brochure) describing a foodborne illness, its causes, symptoms, and steps to prevention. This will be a "pocket" resource or "cheat sheet" for each student to keep. You should incorporate text and graphics. All sources should be cited.
Next you will work in your team to gather information on steps you and other students can follow to avoid or minimize food safety risks. These will be more consumer oriented that some of the earlier material you may have uncovered. Your team will use this material to create a rap, rhyme, or song to perform/present to the class as a learning strategy to assist all in retaining this information.
You will analyze the information you know along with the facts from your research and develop a theory as to the cause of the high school flu epidemic.
As a group we will all brainstorm ways that you can inform or educate your peers about their role in reducing food safety problems.
Students will share:
•ways they could educate peers in reducing food safety risks
•trifold "pocket informants" about foodborne illnesses
•the rap, rhyme, or song their team crated to assist with learning
•their theory about the cause of the high school flu epidemic
I will use a checklist to assess the rap, rhyme, or song and a rubric to evaluate the trifold brochure.
After students share their projects, they will enter the following reflections:
•What single most important finding did you discover?
•What changes do you see yourself making at home, work, or in class in how you handle food?
•How will what you learned affect you?
Graphic Organizer for researching the Internet.
Web site _____________________________________________
Web site address ______________________________________
Bacteria causing/relating to illness:
Time til onset of symptoms (incubation time):
Food Safety Sleuth
Facts known: Research related to facts
Person interviewed _________________________________________
Role related to food safety:
What do you perceive as problems related to food safety?
Advice to all:
Special consumer tips:
Possible interview questions:
Please complete the following:
What was your single most important discovery?
* How will you use/apply this?
What changes do you see yourself making at home, work, or in class related to how you handle food?
How will what you learned affect you?