Saturday, April 14, 2012

Another sourdough recipe

Don't you love it when things go even more smoothly than you planned?

Last Thursday morning we fed the sourdough starter again. (As easy as it is, I have still almost forgotten to stir it a couple of times. Kind of like how I keep forgetting to give my cat her medicine...)

Then in the afternoon we worked in three groups to mix up batches of pancake batter.

I divided kids based on their research groups for this unit. Last week students selected from three topics for independent research: Gold Rush, weapons and tools, and clothing. Since then, everyone has had time to do online research using links our librarian found for them, and good old analog books. While groups waited for their turn to make pancakes, I met with the research groups in the classroom. They discussed their research and I was pleased to watch them engage in thoughtful conversation about the information they had found.

Back to the batter: Su took one group at a time down to the kitchen to cook up their pancakes on the two cast iron griddles I had borrowed from co-workers. Colleen finished helping groups mix the batter and then joined Su in the kitchen after all the batter was mixed.

Within an hour everyone had made and eaten their pancakes and pancakes were delivered to the adults who had loaned out their griddles. We packed up and had time to get outside and enjoy the sunshine. And once again Su and Colleen cleaned up for me! Because we were working in the kitchen, they were able to run the dishes through the Hobart dishwasher. Even still, I appreciated their time; I had been planning to take care of the clean up after school.

This project worked well for several reasons:
1) The recipe took the amount of time I anticipated and created a food product everyone enjoyed. Evidence:
2) I broke the class up into small enough groups that everyone got to be involved in the mixing and cooking.
3) While kids were waiting to cook, I had a meaningful activity planned and they engaged in it and took it seriously.

I also liked that:
  • We got to use the sourdough starter a second way.
  • Kids got to see how a griddle is used, even though we weren't cooking over an open fire.
  • Because I stayed in the classroom, I wasn't tempted to eat a light and fluffy pancake during Passover! I will, however, be trying this recipe sometime soon, now that I am again able to eat leavened foods.

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