At-Home Science Projects

The grade 9 science class has been busy so far this octomester! In our first unit we learned about the steps of the scientific method and how we actually use these steps to conduct scientific experiments in our daily lives (i.e. Why isn’t my toaster working?). We practiced designing experiments, making sure that only one variable was changed so that it would be a fair test.

For our chemistry unit we learned about physical and chemical properties. We examined different foods in our kitchen, using our senses to describe them and completed density and viscosity tests. Students also conducted their own solubility experiments. When discussing chemical properties we explained reactivity with the classic vinegar and baking soda demo and tested the acidity of various household products using red cabbage as a pH indicator.

To bring these units together, students had to design an experiment to test products at home. They came up with a testable question, described the properties of the products involved, went through all of the steps of the scientific method and shared their results with the class. We had a wide range of questions, including “Which glue dries faster?”, “Which chip is the spiciest?”, and “Which car will go farther?”.

Students enjoyed completing their experiments at home, but are happy to now be back in school every other day where we can do more engaging activities together (but still 6ft apart!).

What’s Cooking?

Cooking Club started off the new year by making simple, but satisfying smoothies. After all the holiday treats and big meals it was nice to make something packed full of healthy fruits and vegetables. As this was a fairly easy snack to prepare we had lots of time to catch up on our winter break activities and also discuss what recipes to make in the coming weeks. We have a long list of interesting ideas to choose from with some old favourites and new challenges.

Over the last few weeks we have made some really tasty meals. We created loaded nachos,
homemade pizzas, and stir-fries. Each student used their favourite ingredients to customize the meal for themselves and their families. These versatile recipes are great to meet the diverse tastes of our students and also allows them to use whatever they have on hand, which is a good skill and especially important during the pandemic.

We hope to be able to cook together in person once again, but for now our virtual Cooking Club gives us the opportunity to share our love of food with each other and socialize with our friends.

Cooking Comfort Foods


With winter upon us and another lockdown in place Cooking Club has been making some warm and comforting meals to get us through!

Last week everyone made their version of fried rice. We discussed some key tips to making delicious fried rice including using leftover rice, sesame oil, and fresh ginger. Once again, there was a wide variety in the ingredients that students chose, including chicken, tofu, beef, shrimp, egg and lots of different veggies. The end results were even better than the take out versions.

This past week we made a fan favourite – macaroni and cheese. Impressively everyone made their mac n cheese from scratch, no KD in sight. We discussed how to make a roux for the base of the sauce and shared what kind of cheeses we were including. Some students chose to make a different kind of pasta dish to suit their needs, leaving everyone satisfied.

With just a couple sessions left for the year the club plans to make Potato Latkes next week ahead of Chanukah and then finish off 2020 (finally!) with some holiday baking.

What has Cooking Club Been Up To?


Cooking Club continues to meet weekly and has been putting together some new and healthy recipes. In the days leading up to each session students are told what type of food they will be preparing and given some ideas and recipes. Some choose from the provided recipes, but many research their own or use a family favourite.

A few weeks ago we made soup and we had everything from chicken noodle to pea soup to carrot/sweet potato to tomato and more! This past week we made veggies and dip, which was a good opportunity for students to practice their knife skills and slice vegetables into uniform sticks. They also practiced their presentation skills to create pleasing veggie platters. Again we had a variety of recipes from hummus to thousand island to roasted cauliflower to cheese dip, and even spinach dip in a bread bowl!

Last week, we did things a little differently and one of our students chose the recipe for everyone to follow. He had suggested we make Korean Vegetable Pancakes, which was something most students had never even tasted before, so it seemed like a great idea. Students learned about this popular dish and worked to create savoury pancakes with a slightly chewy, yet crispy texture. It was fun to experiment with something different and try new foods!

Cooking Club Feasts on Fall Flavours


For our first Cooking Club session in October we embraced fall flavours and put together stuffed sweet potatoes. We used quinoa, onions, and kale for the filling and topped them off with cranberries and goats’ cheese. Some students followed the recipe closely and made stuffed sweet potatoes for the whole family. Others made a variation on the recipe or used the theme to make something different, including one student’s full Thanksgiving plate.

It was a good week to make something on the healthier side as we made pizza in last week’s meeting and are planning cookies for this week. It also helped gear everyone up for the Thanksgiving weekend!

Students continue to enjoy the chance to see each other, albeit virtually, and it is extra special that a few alumni regularly join us so that we can remain in touch. Many students use Cooking Club as an opportunity to socialize and often phone numbers are exchanged and plans are made. So, there is definitely truth to the saying that “food brings people together”!