Since June is National Dairy Month, I decided that making up a lesson plan for my kindergartener and fourth grade children they would enjoy on how dairy products come into existence. Moreover, living only 300 feet from a cattle farm and our town has a few families who milk goats, so I am at a huge advantage over the typical homeschooling mom that wants to do the same lesson plan. Although I do not home-school my younger children yet, I do home-school my older boys so I developed a sense of confidence in my lesson plans.
I will present my lesson plan to my children after school is completed for the summer, which will be May 20. This lesson is appropriate for grades Kindergarten through 5th grade.
Here is the lesson plan. If you decide to implement the lesson plan into your daily schedule, please leave feedback as to how it goes. You can break this lesson up into 3 separate days, or you can plan a whole day of fun!
1.) Day One: Object Lesson on Dairy Products.
As you prepare breakfast, be sure to have a few diverse dairy products displayed. Some suggestions are cottage cheese, a glass of milk and some yogurt. Let your child sample these foods, and ask them if they know how these foods are made. For younger children, you should ask them if they know what animals are responsible for these foods. Once they answer you, let them know that many types of animals give us milk to use such as cows, goats, and although rare, yaks. If your children are unsure of what yaks look like, you can click hereto show learn more about them.
Coloring pages- For your younger students, I found some printable, educational dairy pages appropriate for ages 5 to 12 years old. Click hereto check them out. Note to parents with older children: When discussing milk products with your older student (3rd grade and up) emphasize the nutritional qualities of dairy products, such as vitamin A, D, and calcium levels. A pdf slide show about calcium is available here.
2.) Day Two: Dairy Farm Tour.
Take your children to a dairy farm to give them hands on experience they will never forget. To find the nearest dairy farm, go to local.com. This site will automatically detect your geographical area. Simply type “Dairy farms” in the search area and your results will display momentarily.
Virtual Dairy Farm Tour: Not everyone has access to a dairy farm nearby, so a virtual tour is a nice alternative. If you want to take an online tour with your children, there is a very good website that lets you see nearly every corner of the farm, and discusses the different parts of the farm and their importance. They explain in detail the entire process from birth of new cows, feeding and care, to the transportation of milk products to the store. Click here to start the virtual tour.
3.) Day Three: Pick a Recipe Day & A trip to the store
This is where your children get to enjoy the fruits of their learning experience and put their new found knowledge to good use. Allow your children to choose a recipe or two that involves dairy products and shop for the ingredients at a local food market. Some recipe ideas are things like homemade macaroni and cheese, milk smoothies, and here is a dessert recipe from Mealsmatter.org to get you started:
Double Strawberry Milksicles
1 (10 ounce) package frozen strawberry halves in syrup
1 cup Low fat milk
1/2 cup Fat free strawberry frozen yogurt or strawberry sorbet
1 Popsicle tray (holding eight 2.5-ounce popsicles)
8 Popsicle sticks
— Partially thaw strawberries.
— Place partially frozen strawberries with liquid in blender. Add milk
and frozen yogurt or strawberry sorbet. Cover; blend until smooth.
Pour into popsicle tray.
— Place popsicle sticks in centers. Freeze until firm.
June is National Dairy Month! Kids are home from school, but let us not let their learning diminish over the break.