- pizza ingredients (mini-bagels or English muffins, shredded mozzarella cheese, pizza sauce)
- foil pan
- chart paper and marker
- paper plates and several plastic spoons
Objective: Children will develop observational, science, and language skills by engaging in a cooking activity that uses heat from the sun.
- Plan this activity for a warm, sunny day. Engage children in a discussion about the sun. Ask them to share what they already know and create a language experience chart.
- Encourage children to think about how the heat from the sun changes things. Why do people need to wear sunscreen lotion? Why do we usually need to place plants in the sunshine? What happens when we place wet clothing in the sun? Can they think of other ways the sun's heat can change things?
- Now ask children if they think they might be able to use heat from the sun to make pizza. Record their responses.
- Gather together the suggested cooking materials. Have children wash their hands before joining you at the table. Give them each paper plates and half of a mini-bagel. Ask them to put a small amount of pizza sauce on their bagel then top it with shredded cheese. Place the pizza bagels on a large foil or metal tray.
- Find a clean outdoor area with direct sunlight to place the tray. Ask children to predict what will happen to the cheese. How long do they think it will take for the sun to heat the pizza? Record their predictions and use a watch to time the process. Encourage children to notice the changes that occur as the sun heats the food.
- Bring along a favorite beverage and find an area to enjoy the pizza. Can children think of other types of snacks that could be made in the sun?
Curriculum Connection: LITERACY
Fun in the Sun. Ask the group to share some of their favorite things to do when the sun is shining. How does the sunshine make them feel? Give children story paper and drawing materials and invite them to create a drawing about the sun. Assist them in writing or dictating information about their drawing. Invite everyone to share his or her work during group time.
Sun by Susan Canizares and Daniel Moreton
The Sun Is My Favorite Star by Frank Asch
Sun Up, Sun Down by Gail Gibbons