New on our Youth Mission menu: food-related educational packs for teachers!
EIT Food is launching two educational packs supporting teachers creating awareness about food-related issues and agrifood careers at schools.
From 9 to 18 is the perfect age period to learn to learn about food, sustainability and health, to hear about agrifood career opportunities and to start developing leadership and an entrepreneurial mindset. However, national curricula rarely include relevant information on those topics and busy teachers are left alone to research and teach about these topics during their classes. How could we fix this problem?
To support teachers all over Europe, capitalising on previous assets developed by its partners, EIT Food invited educational experts to create coherent, ready-to-use educational packs available in multiple European languages. The resource packs titled Food Mission and Food Careers are downloadable, easy-to-use teachers’ handbooks with online supplementary materials targeting younger students from 9-14 (Food Mission) and teenagers from 15-18 (Food Careers). The development of the packs was preceded by a thorough needs assessment survey to explore what topics and learning materials are needed the most.
Both educational resource packs offer three thematic modules teaching students about food and sustainability, food and health, food and science communication, and also about exploring food systems and food careers along with food science and entrepreneurship. The methodology of the packs is among others, gamification, learning by doing, experimentation, group work and soft skills development.
The lesson plans are meant to provoke curiosity and inspire students with everyday examples and case studies. Among others, these lesson plans invite students to investigate the topics of regenerative agriculture (“How to make a chicken happy?”), the importance of plant-based diets (“The best plant-based milk competition”), and the role of circularity in our food systems (“From linear to circular”). Regarding systems thinking and agrifood career opportunities, students get a chance to explore their school food environment (“Foodscape mapping and the foodscape walkabout), learn about food careers in a fun way (“The jobs behind a bag of potato chips”) and participate themselves in scientific experimentation (“The amazing job of a food sensory scientist”) .
The development of the educational packs entered Phase 2 this August. It is now the teachers’ turn to try and implement the lesson plans provided in the handbooks. In each of the 5 piloting countries (Czech Republic, Cyprus, Israel, Hungary and Spain) teachers are recruited for a train the teachers’ training. They then have a month to try out at least one lesson plan in their classrooms from the handbooks and report on how it went.
The full English versions of both Food Mission and Food Careers and all related background materials are already available for free download from EIT Food’s website and in the months of September and October the national translations (Czech, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian and Spanish) will be rolled out accompanied by the local teachers’ trainings. We are inviting all teachers from all over Europe and beyond to have a look and try out our lesson plans!
If you want to know more about the educational resource packs and bring the lesson plans to your classes or know someone who might be interested, click here!