"Gourmet Lab" helps teachers demonstrate scientific principles through food
Thursday, October 18, 2012
Young, who earned her Master’s in Science Education in 2005 from Lesley’s Graduate School of Education, told the audience gathered in the University Hall Amphitheater that she had been seeking approaches to help her middle school students grasp scientific concepts, and she was at first inspired by a colleague who used cooking in class.
Her work using food to teach science eventually grew into a book, “Gourmet Lab,” which was published by the National Science Teachers Association Press and is a collection of hands-on experiments (and corresponding teachers’ guide) that teaches chemistry, biology and physics through cooking.
During her presentation at Lesley, Young gave the audience a taste of the lessons in her book, including an experiment that uses Hershey kisses to study thermal energy, and a lesson that involves popping popcorn to analyze mass, volume and conservation of mass and energy.
Her presentation was followed by a book signing and reception in the University Hall Atrium, during which she engaged with teachers, faculty and fellow Lesley students and alumni.
When she was a graduate student at Lesley, Young worked closely with Professor Paul Jablon – who introduced her at Tuesday’s event – and completed a practicum at the Brookwood School in Manchester, MA. Since then, her career has skyrocketed, frequently pulling her away from her classroom – but always focused on teaching science.
Young now serves as Science Specialist in the Utah State Office of Education. Last year she won a prestigious Albert Einstein Fellowship and spent the year in Washington, D.C. at the National Science Foundation, where she worked with government agencies to assist them in effectively reaching teachers on various initiatives, among other work.
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