- Author: Evelyn Morales
Fresno and Madera Counties' UC CalFresh Nutrition Education Program has a long-standing partnership with the Fresno State Dietetic Internship Program. This blog post is part of our Intern Reflections Series.
When I first arrived at UCCE I observed a new teacher practice session in the conference room. Everyone pretended to be first graders as a new employee read a book and taught the MyPlate introduction. They gave her tips at the end of her lesson on ways to be more effective. I thought it was a great way to offer constructive criticism and ensure that new employees are getting the hang of things.
On Wednesday, I traveled with Tacu to Jobs and Beyond and observed a nutrition class and cooking demo. Tacu is an excellent presenter and I really enjoyed watching him teach! He did a great job of encouraging the class to participate and be active in what they were learning. At the end, he made a veggie quesadilla for everyone to try and it tasted great! I got to teach the PA lesson at the end.
On Thursday, I traveled with Evelyn and Ruth to Firebaugh to observe and help teach K-2nd grade classes. Evelyn is a great educator and makes learning so fun for the kids! I co-taught a kindergarten class with Ruth and we introduced the MyPlate to the kids and did a MyPlate puzzle activity where the kids got to actively participate in creating the MyPlate. It was a ton of fun. I also got to help with a lesson that used a very large MyPlate mat.
On Friday, I traveled to Jobs and Beyond again and observed Austin and Sergio teach a nutrition lesson and do a cooking demo of an apple chicken salad. I led the spice activity and it was such a blast having everyone guess what they thought the spices were! Later in the day I completed my Nutrition Corner poster.
My completed Nutrition Corner on Food Safety
This week has been very fun. I spent the whole day with Chris on Tuesday teaching nutrition classes at Viking Elementary. I led a few different activities including food bingo for the special ed class. In the middle of the lesson, a student found a beetle on the floor and it caused a scene. Turns out, the teacher is a master gardener and happened to have two Venus fly trap plants in the classroom. She kept the beetle to feed to the plant!
The venus fly trap plant!
Most of Wednesday was spent with Mishelle at Hamilton Elementary teaching pre-K up to 4th grade.
Teacher Mishelle talking to the kiddos about My Plate!
On Thursday I helped Nora and Yolanda at the Turkey Trot for Hamilton Elementary school. We passed out mango & mint infused water and had props on display to show students and parents how much sugar is in soda and other drinks. It was so much fun!
Ready to serve kids infused water!
The biggest thing that I've learned so far from UCCE is how easy and fun teaching children can be. The kids classes are such a blast and I really love how high energy they are. I often get nervous public speaking or doing education lessons, but I haven't been nervous with the kids at all.
I've also been surprised at how quickly children pick up and retain information. Chris and I went into a classroom that he had taught once the previous year. The children remembered almost everything with just a little prompting! I was so impressed.
Overall this has been a great two weeks going out to the community and teaching nutrition. I've been reminded how vital nutrition education is and why it is needed so badly in the community. Thanks UCCE for having me!