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Chefs of the Week

By Karen Goldman

Teacher's Notes

This project was designed for a Human Physiology class. It can be modified for any class which covers a nutrition unit. It is helpful to have a computer program which analyzes the nutrient content of the foods prepared but this is not absolutely necessary. Students can find this information in government sources or nutrition books that are easily found in the library or local book store. There has been a very positive student response to the presentations. The students are often impressed with the amount of food that they can eat. It is quite effective in changing the way some students eat.

The best design is with groups of three students forming a team. Each student is assigned a meal for one day. The team must organize sufficiently to serve meals that are complementary and provide the nutrients required for one day for one of their team members (the members can decide who it is that they are "feeding"). During the oral presentation, the meals are set up (microwave warming prior to this) on a table in a appealing fashion. Each member provides enough food to serve one person for that meal. The presenters then explain what the nutrient requirements for one day are for the chosen team member. The individuals of the team then explain how their meal has helped fill the nutritional requirements for this individual (see grading sheet). "Taste-testers" are chosen from the class by the teacher and they grade the flavor and appeal of the meals. The teacher grades for content and presentation. I have used one presentation per week.

I do try to encourage students to use meals that they enjoy but they must meet the nutritional requirements to be healthful. I also try to encourage ethnic foods since the originals so often are nutritionally very complete. I have had no real problems with students who were not able to comply but my audience has been upper- to middle class.


Physiology Project

The purposes of this project include
  1. Allowing you to experience varied, healthful cuisines.

  2. Giving you the chance to learn how to prepare meals for yourself (all you college-bound seniors...this is a life-saving skill!)

  3. Helping you learn how to analyze the contents of foods through a computer program. Hopefully you will also enjoy this approach to nutrition analysis.

Teams of students will be determined as the teacher dictates. Teams will then follow the given directions and present their projects on the assigned dates.
  1. Each member of the team will be assigned a meal that they will be responsible for preparing, analyzing and serving.

  2. Each member of the team will develop a menu for their assigned meal.

  3. The team will work on balancing the individual meals to provide a comprehensive, balanced meal plan.

  4. Get teacher approval for the meal plan. Realize that you will not be allowed to duplicate meals of the other groups and the O.K. will be given on a first-come-first-served basis. Check the official calendar of meals to be sure you are not duplicating.

  5. Each individual will analyze their own meal for all nutrients by means of the Food Processor II program (Apple IIe). This will be available as indicated by the teacher. You will need instruction on use of the program. Be sure one of your team members, a friend or the teacher can give you instructions on the use of the computer program.

  6. The team will analyze the menu for the entire day. The menu should fulfill the average daily requirements for your group members (calculate this using the program). Be sure to have total Calories, % Calories from Fats, Carbs. and Proteins, and amounts of Calcium and Iron calculated for the menu. Add anything else that you feel is significant about the menu.

  7. On the day of the Report/Presentation, the meals, cooked by the respective individuals, will be presented to the class (only one serving is necessary for each item of the menu). Individuals will present the summary of their nutrient analysis for their meal and will provide samples for the taste testers. The group will also summarize how the entire menu meets nutritional requirements for the day. Explain what you are serving and why. Use a theme if you want. Make the presentation interesting for the audience!

Grading: Total of 40 points

The three scores will be averaged to provide the score for the group. This will be the grade recorded for each individual

30 pts. for the quality and thoroughness of the presentation, the balance of the menu. Check the grading sheet to know what will be expected.
10 pts. for the judges response to flavor, palatability, food presentation. (Three judges will consist of one teacher and two students selected from the class)

If a student does not fulfill her/his obligation, the group grade will be determined by the average of the other two students' grades. The errant student will lose twice the group grade from their quarter grade.

No pre-prepared, packaged/purchased etc. meals.

Chefs of the Week

Grade Sheet

Quality of the Menu: (15 pts.)

Did the menu provide a variety of foods from various food groups? (Were fruits, vegetables and grains presented?)

Did the menu fulfill the RDA for the individual? Was there too much or too little of any important nutrient? Keep in mind: total calories, % of calories from carbohydrates, fats and proteins, the amount of calcium, vitamin C, iron, and the B vitamins.

Was there a source of fiber in the menu?

Did the food look appealing?

Thoroughness of Presentation: (15 pts.)

Did each student have a clear idea of the nutrient value of their own meal?

Was each student capable of pointing out the primary food value of each item on the menu?

Was the information clearly presented (verbally? visually?)

Were the presenters organized and "together" in front of the class?

Was there anything special about the presentation?

Taste Testers Responses:

(to be attached) (10 pts.)

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