National Agricultural Literacy Curriculum Matrix
Search Lesson Plans & Companion Resources
3 - 5
Two 60-minute sessions plus optional activity
Students will learn where the ingredients in a cookie are made and make chocolate chip oatmeal cookies to practice their measurement skills and fractional mathematics.
- For the teacher: 1 set dry measuring cups, 1 spoon, 1 table knife, 1 set measuring spoons, small to medium size bowl, flour, brown sugar.
- For each group: 1 set dry measuring cups, 1 kitchen scale, 1 small bowl (or medium bowl), 2 spoons, 1 table knife (for leveling), 3 gallon-size re-sealable zipper storage bags (labeled 1, 2 & 3), 1 set measuring spoons, 1 cup flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1 cup chocolate chips (1/2 of a 12-ounce package), 3/4 cup oats, 3/4 cup packed brown sugar. Optional: Plastic trays (to hold ingredients).
- Measuring Up student handout
- Cups, Spoons, and Scales student handout
- For the teacher: Oven or toaster oven, 1 liquid measuring cup, 1 small pitcher of water, 1 set measuring spoons, cookie trays, 1 set oven mitts, 1 spatula, wire cooling racks or foil sheets, extra zipper storage bags to store cookies.
- For each group: 1 medium bowl (or large bowl), 1 set measuring spoons, 1 stirring spoon, 2 small spoons, 1 cookie sheet, 1 egg, 1/2 cup butter (softened), 1 1/2 teaspoons water, 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract, storage bags 1, 2, & 3 from Day 1: Cups, Spoons and Scales. Optional: eye droppers (to measure liquid ingredients).
- Liquid Measurement student handout
- While You Wait: Fractional Mathematics: 1 set dry measuring cups, 1 liquid measuring cup, 1 plastic tray, 2 cups of water (in a small pitcher or container) for each group.
- Fractional Mathematics student handout
Essential Files (maps, charts, pictures, or documents)
- Math Enrichment Activity Key
- Student Handouts
- Teacher Answer Key
- Inch by Inch, Row by Row (Math Enrichment Activity)
liquid ingredients: liquid foods or spices used in cooking and baking
dry ingredients: dry foods or spices used in cooking and baking
packed: the ingredient is pushed or pressed into a measuring cup
Background Agricultural Connections
Interest Approach – Engagement
- In this lesson students will be learning about measurements as they make cookies. To introduce the lesson, teach your students where each cookie ingredient is produced. Begin by asking students to name some of the ingredients in cookies. List the cookie ingredients on the board and ask students where each ingredient comes from. Is it produced on a farm like wheat or eggs? Or, is it a natural resource like salt that is mined from the earth?
- Read the book, "All in Just One Cookie" by Susan E Goodman. Help students understand that farmers grow and produce the food we eat each day.
Activity 1: (Day 1)
Scientific Inquiry: Cups, Spoons, and Scales
- Read Measuring Up and complete the Doodle Bugs.
- Break the class into groups of four and allow groups to gather supplies.
- Ask each group of students to line their dry measuring cups up from smallest to largest (1/4-cup, 1/3-cup, 1/2-cup and 1-cup). Ask “Which cup is the smallest?” and “Which is the largest?” Explain to your students that the one-cup represents a whole and the rest of the measuring cups are all parts or fractions of that whole. For example, there are four one-fourth cups in one cup.
- Demonstrate proper techniques for measuring dry ingredients:
- Set the one-cup in a small bowl. Instruct students do all their measuring in or over a bowl too. Spoon the flour into the one-cup, until the cup is slightly overflowing. Level off by using the flat edge of a knife to scrape off excess flour.
- Hold the tablespoon over the small bowl and demonstrate how to measure 1 tablespoon of flour.
- Explain that some ingredients need to be packed. Then demonstrate packing by measuring 1 cup of brown sugar. Spoon sugar into the one-cup measure and then use the back of your spoon to press the brown sugar down into the cup. Continue spooning brown sugar into the bowl and pressing, until the cup is completely full. Use the flat edge of a knife to level off any extra brown sugar. If packed properly, the brown sugar will hold its shape when dumped into a mixing bowl.
- Discuss volume measurement. “Did I measure the weight, height or volume of the flour and brown sugar?” Tell students that at home we usually use volume measurements like measuring cups and spoons. However, when chefs cook for large groups of people, they often measure the weight of ingredients. (Weight measurement is more accurate when cooking large amounts of food). Ask “What tool can we use to measure weight?”
- Show students how to use a scale to measure the weight of ingredients. Place an empty one-half-cup measure on your scale and zero the scale. Remove the one- half-cup from the scale, add flour to the one-half-cup and weigh the cup again. You can explain that by zeroing the scale you made the weight of the cup disappear. Only the weight of the flour in the cup is measured. Record the weight on the board. Be sure to point out the units in both metric and US customary systems, if possible.
- Students will do Scientific Inquiry: Cups, Spoons and Scales. Upon completing this activity, they will have completed the Kitchen Measurement Facts tables and measured all the dry ingredients needed for chocolate chip oatmeal cookies.
- Check to make sure each group’s bags are tightly sealed. Safely store bags for use in Measure Up: Day 2: Liquid Measurement.
Activity 2: (Day 2)
Scientific Inquiry: Liquid Measurement
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Demonstrate proper liquid measuring techniques:
- Place the liquid measuring cup on a flat surface. Measure one cup of water by slowly pouring water from the pitcher into the measuring cup. When the water reaches the one-cup line on the side of the liquid measuring cup, stop pouring. Be sure to fill liquids up to the correct line marked on the side of the cup. Show students that their eyes should be level with the cup when measuring liquid ingredients. Your students may notice that the water surface appears curved. This curved surface is a meniscus. When measuring, match the bottom of the meniscus (or curve) to the correct line on the side of the cup.
- Hold a tablespoon over the liquid measuring cup or over a bowl. Fill the spoon with water. When the spoon is full, the liquid will stick up above the side of the spoon and look rounded. This curved water surface is a meniscus. You can pour the water back into the pitcher.
- Show your students that the lines marked on the side of a stick of butter represent tablespoons. Explain that one stick is equal to one-half cup of butter.
- You or another adult will crack an egg into each group’s medium bowl. Be sure to wash your hands after touching raw eggs. Any student that touches a raw egg should wash their hands too. Safely dispose of eggshells.
- Break the class into their small groups from Activity 1: Cups, Spoons and Scales.
- Students will follow the Activity 2: Liquid Measurement instructions to measure liquid ingredients, mix the liquid and dry ingredients together, and prepared cookie dough.
- Bake cookies in the pre-heated oven for 12 minutes. (If using a toaster oven, cookies may take longer to bake.)
- Remove cookies from the oven using oven mitts. Use a spatula to remove the cookies from the tray. Place cookies on wire cooling racks or on sheets of foil.
- Let cookies cool. Give each student a cookie to taste. Remind students to rate their cookies and complete the last questions in the Cups, Spoons and Scales worksheet. Your class may choose to take extra cookies home to share with their families or may give extra cookies to other teachers and staff members.
- While the cookies are baking and cooling, students may complete While You Wait: Fractional Mathematics.
While You Wait: Fractional Mathematics
- While cookies are baking and cooling, students will experiment with equivalent fractions. Students can work in their same groups for this activity.
- Instruct students to gather additional supplies needed. Remind students to fill cups completely. Ask students “Why is it important to fill the cup all the way to the top?”
- If any groups finishes early, ask them to brainstorm all the different ways you can measure one cup.
Concept Elaboration and Evaluation
After conducting these activities, review and summarize the following key concepts:
- All food products, including the individual ingredients used to make cookies or any other recipe come from agriculture.
- Mathematics and measuring skills are used on farms to produce the food we eat. They are also used in the kitchen to measure ingredients.
We welcome your feedback! Please take a minute to tell us how to make this lesson better or to give us a few gold stars!
Inch by Inch, Row by Row: Complete the attached math enrichment activity. Students will learn how to calculate spacing for plants and seeds in a garden.
Suggested Companion Resources
- Portion Size Comparison (Activity)
- All in Just One Cookie (Book)
- Eating Fractions (Book)
- Look Inside Food (Book)
- Eat Happy Project video series (Multimedia)
- How Chocolate Is Made (Multimedia)
- The Science of Cooking (Website)
Agricultural Literacy Outcomes
Food, Health, and Lifestyle
- Diagram the path of production for a processed product, from farm to table (T3.3-5.b)
Education Content Standards
Health Standard 1: Comprehend concepts related to health promotion and disease prevention to enhance health.
1.5.1Describe the relationship between healthy behaviors and personal health.
5-PS1: Matter and Its Interactions
Common Core Connections
Mathematics: Practice Standards
CCSS.MATH.PRACTICE.MP1Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them. Students start by explaining to themselves the meaning of a problem and looking for entry points to its solution. They analyze givens, constraints, relationships, and goals. They make conjectures about the form and meaning of the solution and plan a solution pathway rather than simply jumping into a solution attempt. They consider analogous problems, and try special cases and simpler forms of the original problem in order to gain insight into its solution. They monitor and evaluate their progress and change course if necessary. Students check their answers to problems using a different method, and they continually ask themselves, “Does this make sense?” They can understand the approaches of others to solving complex problems and identify correspondences between different approaches.
CCSS.MATH.PRACTICE.MP2Reason abstractly and quantitatively. Students make sense of quantities and their relationships in problem situations. They bring two complementary abilities to bear on problems involving quantitative relationships: the ability to decontextualize—to abstract a given situation and represent it symbolically and manipulate the representing symbols as if they have a life of their own, without necessarily attending to their referents—and the ability to contextualize, to pause as needed during the manipulation process in order to probe into the referents for the symbols involved. Quantitative reasoning entails habits of creating a coherent representation of the problem at hand; considering the units involved; attending to the meaning of quantities, not just how to compute them; and knowing and flexibly using different properties of operations and objects.
CCSS.MATH.PRACTICE.MP4Model with mathematics. Students can apply the mathematics they know to solve problems arising in everyday life, society, and the workplace. Students who can apply what they know are comfortable making assumptions and approximations to simplify a complicated situation, realizing that these may need revision later. They are able to identify important quantities in a practical situation and map their relationships using such tools as diagrams, two-way tables, graphs, flowcharts and formulas. They can analyze those relationships mathematically to draw conclusions.
CCSS.MATH.PRACTICE.MP5Use appropriate tools strategically. Students consider the available tools when solving a mathematical problem. These tools might include pencil and paper, concrete models, a ruler, a protractor, a calculator, a spreadsheet, a computer algebra system, a statistical package, or dynamic geometry software. Students at various grade levels are able to identify relevant external mathematical resources, such as digital content located on a website, and use them to pose or solve problems. They are able to use technological tools to explore and deepen their understandings of concepts.