Sunday, February 12, 2012

They Don't Know What I Don't Teach

Oh man did I realize how true this statement really is last week. I was cooking with my 7th graders. Before we went into the lab, I explained every part of the recipe (or at least I thought) and we were finally able to move into the lab. The students were so excited!! And I really enjoy the cooking section too!

This day I had my class working on two labs--two very simple labs that is. Cheese enchiladas (in the microwave) and cake mix cookies. Both labs only had 3-4 ingredients each. The students were working together and talking quietly. Everyone was staying in their assigned kitchen. They were washing dishes as they were going. My room was starting to smell amazing from the sweetness of the cookies. Life was going good.

Then one of my students came up to me and asked "What do we do with the extra cookie dough?"
"Um why do you have extras?"
"Well, you told us we needed to bring 2 cookies up to you for the other teachers and then we only have 4 people. So we only made 6 cookies."
"How long have the cookies been in the oven?" {hoping that she is going to say less than a minute and they were asking me about this as soon as they realized there was extras}
"Oh they are almost done Mrs. {last name} We think maybe a minute or two but will you come check them please?"
I look at my watch. Time sure does have a way of escaping while we are in the lab. The clean up bell is going to ring in just a few minutes. There is not time to bake the rest of the cookies. And I didn't know what to do with all the extra cookie dough... so in the trash it went.

The students were totally happy eating just their one cookie. I just felt bad because I assumed they would make the entire batch. I taught them how to drop by tablespoons and how to spray the cookie sheet and I thought everything they needed to know while cooking. But... the students really don't know what I don't teach them! And I didn't mention anything about using the whole amount of dough or figuring out a way to divide the cookies as equally as possible between your lab members. Lesson learned: (1) I'm grateful they we following my instructions exactly and (2) assume the kids know absolutely nothing and go from there.

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