Salsa Science Best Practices for New Teachers Jill Shrum Hendersonville High School Courses • 5114- Floral Design- Developing an SAEStandard 8.4 • Also can be used in Courses 5171, 5169 Problems solving skills or SAE Exploration Overview of Lesson and why it would work in Agriculture Education using research and technology • Our agriculture program has 355 FFA members in a large urban area with no farms and most of our students living in subdivisions or apartments – students struggle with developing SAE’s. • One of my most successful lessons involves discussion of SAE’s and the example of producing and making homemade salsa with my students. – We use this as a week-long unit of study where we study the science of growing our own salsa garden, including the study of spring and fall garden possibilities, frost free dates, length of time for production of the ingredients, light requirement and temperatures, methods of growing the crops (raised beds, traditional gardening, straw bale gardening), hydroponics, food preservation, research on taste tests, pH tests, and marketing of the salsa product. Overview of Lesson and why it would work in Agriculture Education using research and technology • There are many possibilities for not only SAE’s, but also Agriscience Fair applications, Marketing Plan CDE’s, Ag Communications, the Tennessee Cooperative Development Challenge and the possibility of writing grants for funding. – In July of 2012, I was awarded a $2500 grant to help fund our FFA school garden and AgriScience Fair projects related to the garden including our SALSA SCIENCE SAE. • Students have worked in the summer making fresh salsa for sale at our local Hendersonville Farmers Market which has also helped us in our Tennessee Cooperative Development Challenge CDE at our State FFA Convention. • In 2012 we had a student AgriScience Fair Project based on our tomato variety germination statistics for this project. There are countless applications for AgriScience projects that could be applied to this lesson including germination experiments, pH readings on salsa or tomato acidity on varieties, taste tests, preferences on commercially produced salsa vs. fresh salsa, and the benefits of fresh food over processed canned foods. Overview of Lesson and why it would work in Agriculture Education using research and technology • Our “Salsa Day” has also been a public relations hit with our administration. – Our students invited the principals and vice principals to be our taste testers to determine our winners of the “Blue Ribbon Salsa Competitions”. • Our administration looks forward to coming down to our classrooms to interact with students and taste their products. Overview of Lesson and why it would work in Agriculture Education using research and technology • Our students are grouped in groups of 4 and each group researches recipes and ingredients for their product. • If our fresh produce is available at school, they will use our vegetables and herbs, and if not, students will provide their own ingredients from their gardens or from the supermarket. • They must work together to assemble ingredients and create a product. • Each group will be responsible for the presentation of the salsa to their judges with a creative name and sales pitch. Materials list • • • • • • • • Cutting boards or Dinner Plates Paring Knives Index or recipe cards Markers Labels for Jars/Bowls/plastic wares Paper towels Measuring spoons and cups Small bowls for serving/Plastic spoons Suggested Ingredients: • • • • • • • Tomatoes Onions Peppers: Bell, Jalapeno, Garlic (fresh or minced) Limes or lemons Cilantro Optional: Cans of black beans, whole Kernel Corn, Pineapple, Fresh mango, (for fruit/specialty salsas) Lesson Plan for SALSA Science SAE • Objectives : Students will study the needs for SAE’s and the possibilities of developing their own SAE with an example of making homemade SALSA from their own gardens, school garden, or bought from the grocery store. • Sub-Objectives: Students will produce materials and product for an SAE and see how an SAE can be developed. Grouping • Students will be placed in groups of 4 with the task of producing the salsa, making a salsa name, producing a marketing sales pitch, and presenting to judges of their salsa creation. Questioning • Research the cost of grocery products of fresh refrigerated salsa and canned salsa as well as ingredients and compare the costs with your homemade product. Is it worth the difference to make your own? Which do you prefer? • How much does each ingredient cost and create a cost for your product? • Analyze the acidity of the salsa and relate that to the preferences/conclusions and decisions of the taste testers. • Your labor will be one of the factors, so determine the labor costs if your crew would be paid minimum wage for producing your product, and think of cost cutting measures to produce an economical product Differentiation • Special needs students (CDC) will help with production of product and the invitations to principals for judging of salsa. Homework • Produce a poster for each group with salsa recipe and minimum of 6 ingredients . Students will record all research, ingredients and results of taste testing on poster. Present as a group activity based on research selected from this product. Assessment • Each group will be responsible for a tri fold poster using research from this project presentable for the AgriScience CDE. This will be graded on the CTE rubric of 4,3, 2,1 . Best Salsa group taste testing will receive a blue ribbon as well as 2nd place red ribbon and 3rd white ribbon. Each group will be graded on presentation to judges and overall presentations ranked and graded by instructor. Kenyana Hampton’s SAE project was growing a Salsa garden pepper, herb and tomato plot that she could use at home and school to produce salsa for her family and for her FFA SAE.