Friday, 1 April 2016

Current Events



You never forget your first job. My professional journey began as a waitress in the hospitality industry, fresh out of high school and new to the working world. But before I headed to University to study education, I was already having experiences that would appear in my lesson plans.

On my first shift, I was completely shocked at the amount of food that was wasted. We were serving a buffet lunch and dish after dish of half eaten platters were removed from the buffet table and dumped in to the rubbish. Even more mind-boggling was the fact that there was a homeless shelter only a few minutes' walk away. Yet when I asked my supervisor why food could not be donated, they explained that the company would be held liable if anything were to go wrong.This is the same argument that supermarkets make regarding the unsold food that they throw out. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Food_waste_in_New_Zealand
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Food_waste_in_New_Zealand


I was intrigued when I learnt that France was proposing a ban that would stop supermarkets from wasting unsold food. I could also see the relevance of this event for my learners, who receive free fruit, milk and Weetbix.  I asked my learners what they thought would happen to food that was not sold and found that it sparked great dialogue. One of my learners believed that the food must be eaten by the workers, explaining that it didn't make sense for edible food to be thrown away.  This engagement meant that the ban would be a suitable topic to use for further discussion; I could not justify teaching a topic that did not interest my learners.

I chose to use this topic to create my lessons around for the MDTA current event website. We have spent some time over the last few sessions designing and creating a website that would contain lessons around current events that other teachers could facilitate.  It took some battling with HTML, but I am now far more knowledgeable about web design than I was before undertaking this project.

https://sites.google.com/a/manaiakalani.org/currentevents/yr7-8-supermarket
Click here to view my webpage


I am really looking forward to facilitating the lessons that I have planned around this current event with my learners next week. I will reflect on this teaching and make any edits to my lesson plan that I feel would benefit others, should they wish to use my webpage. 

6 comments:

  1. Your site looks great Danni! I look forward to hearing how it goes in the classroom :) I also worked in hospitality for a number of years and it is insane seeing how much good food gets thrown out daily!

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    1. Thank you Steph, I really liked your page too :) Isn't it crazy! I was always think about it at buffet's now!

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  2. Great job Danni - I did enjoy this background to your work. My professional journey also began in waitressing... in the Tron. Your story resonates with a number of us I suspect after reading Steph's comment. I am so pleased to see you challenging young people to consider the implications of food wasted. Especially in our context when we have people supporting food in school initiatives. It's complicated for sure.

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    1. Thank you Dorothy! Yes it does seem to be a starting point for a number of people. When I brought up the topic with the children I was surprised by how much they had to contribute to the discussion. Hopefully I will be filming a video this weekend to further support my learners and to deepen this discussion; I'm rather excited to teach this next week!

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  3. Great link with the background to the previous job! I feel your learners will be able to sense the authenticity when you discuss this. Growing up in hospitality, this was always a concern of mine too but we were fortunate we had family who had farms so they were able to use food to feed stock etc. Well done on your page, it looks amazing - I can't way to hear how your students go in it :)

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    1. Thank you Heath! I'm really glad to hear that the food was given to the live stock, I know that this is what my family do with their waste too. I will have to mention this to my learners as well!

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