Hot Chocolate is my most recent post on the Teachers Pay Teachers site!
Hot Chocolate seems to be a perfect forum for discussing safety issues when using a burner or hot plate in the classroom.
Whenever we’ve made hot chocolate in the classroom, we’ve always conducted the activity with extreme caution. Here are several classroom setups specifically designed to allow each child a good view of the cooking activity, some ‘hands on’ involvement, easy access to a switch controlling the animations, while simultaneously making safety a top priority.
- When conducting a collaborative small group lesson (3-5 students) I have found it helpful to seat students on one side of a wide table while positioning the burner on the opposite side (away from small reaching hands). The table is positioned in front of the interactive whiteboard (IWB) which is used to display either the Animated Step-by-Step recipe or a food prep communication display. Obviously for many of these setups we would be using a remote switch to instigate the click necessary for activating the animations/sound effects (as opposed to waiting while students circumvent the table to tap the interactive whiteboard). If your table is narrower than you’d like … consider placing the burner on a small sturdy table/cart positioned between the main table and the IWB.
- When conducting a larger group lesson (6-11 students) a V- or U-shaped table or desk arrangement works well. In fact I’ve found these table arrangements to work well for most teacher-led lessons. The interactive whiteboard (IWB) is clearly visible at the open end of the U or V seating arrangement. The open center space allows the Primary Facilitator (the person leading the group) to interact with each student and freely move in and out to offer the remote switch to various students to activate the animations/sound effects/page turns. As illustrated, a small internal table or cart is set up for the burner and the recipe ingredients. Many teachers prefer to use a small cart on locked wheels as the shelf beneath allows the teacher to minimize visual clutter.
- When conducting the activity using a TapIt interactive learning station (http://www.teachsmart.org), a small table/cart is set up next to the adult facilitator (in sight, but off to the side). Obviously, some steps can be safely performed by students, while others (e.g., stirring the hot chocolate on the burner) are best performed by an adult. The fact that all steps cannot be performed by students does not appear to be an issue. There are numerous 'surprise opportunities' to use the switch to activate an animation or turn the page .... so engagement is ensured.
Hope this information proves helpful.
... ’til the next post …
© 2015 Carol Goossens’, Ph.D.