Interest building activity:
Start off by asking students what their favorite food is. Ask them if they know how we get that type of food. After someone has mentioned a type of food we get from a plant, ask the class if they know any other types of food that can be gotten from plants. Bring in a loaf of bread to show the students. Ask if anyone knows how bread is made. Read the story of The Little Red Hen and explain that there are many steps that have to be taken to be able to make a loaf of bread.
Inform students that you will reread the story of The Little Red Hen and that this time, you what them to write down each step of how wheat becomes bread as they hear it. By the end of the story, they should have the following steps written down: It starts with planting seeds, then the wheat grows and is harvested, next, the wheat is threshed, next, it is taken to a mill where it is turned into flour. From there, the flour can be used to turn into bread. Show students the ingredients to make a basic loaf of bread. If time permits, or during another day of science lessons, you can work on mixing the ingredients together and baking the bread if you have access to an oven. Show the students flour, water, yeast, salt, and sugar. Explain that by mixing these ingredients and heating them, a chemical reaction takes place in which the dough mixture turns into a old of bread. Show the students the mixed ingredients as well as the loaf of bread. Either have the students come up to the front of the room in groups to look at and compare the dough and bread, or give each student a small piece of dough and a slice of bread to look at and compare.
Write the following vocabulary words from the story on the board: thresh, sickle, mill.
Then explain the meanings of the words as you write them:
Thresh: to remove grain from a plant
Sickle: a farming tool used for cutting grain. It has a semicircular blade (show students the picture of a sickle from the story)
Mill: a building with machinery that turns grain into flour
Have students choose a food they like to eat, and with their parents’ help, have them research that food and how it is made. The next day, choose a few students who would like to present their findings to the class. Afterwards, have the other students turn to a partner and share their reports with each other.