Meylin Gonzalez teaches kindergarten at Dickenson Elementary School in Tampa, Florida. Situated in a cruise-ship port of central Florida, near the beaches of St. Petersburg, Tampa is home to a diverse population. Dickenson Elementary School is located in a suburban community that supports a variety of small businesses and service industries. Approximately one-third of the students are Spanish bilingual.
Ms. Gonzalez started the year with a unit called All About Me, then moved on to units on transportation, insects, Native Americans, holidays, the seasons and weather, Black History month, forest and jungle habitats, the farm, the solar system, and the ocean environment.
Making Bread Together fell within the unit The Farm and Its Products. Before the lesson, the class read Pasta, Please, a book that explores the process for making pasta. Next, the class invented a fictional bread company called Kinderbread, and replicated parts of the pasta production process to make bread. Ms. Gonzalez introduced basic concepts in business and economics by discussing how buying decisions get made, then had the class create advertisements for their product. Finally, students went to work making bread, assembly-line fashion. Each student had a job to do, without which the bread could not be made. Simultaneously, Ms. Gonzalez mixed, kneaded, and baked dough in a bread machine, so that students could also compare production methods.
As the lesson concluded, the class categorized different products according to whether they were "needs" or "wants." She reviewed the role of individual jobs in the production process, then invited different people to speak to the class about their jobs in the community. She segued into the next unit (on the solar system) by talking about the importance of the sun for life on earth.
Lesson Background >>