September 13, 2023
Written by Flint Hill Admission Team

Turning Tasty Treats Into Experiential Learning

Kindergarten Teacher Candice Porter and her class designed a multifaceted learning experience spanning social studies, art, engineering, reading, and more — and it all revolved around donuts!

Ms. Porter’s class was in the process of coming up with ideas for their dramatic play. They decided to create a donut and coffee shop.

For their first step, Ms. Porter asked her students to go with their families to either a coffee or donut shop over the weekend. Their assignment while there? Think like a scientist to observe, smell, and taste! They brought their ideas back to the classroom the next week. The students made a list of all the things they observed, and they worked together to brainstorm what they needed for their donut shop. The kindergarteners broke into teams to make those materials, using materials from Ms. Porter’s engineering area.

To get them thinking more about what some of the donuts could look like, the class used a Slow Looking Thinking Routine to study a South Korean artist named Jae Yong Kim, who has an entire exhibition of donuts made out of ceramics.


“The students became really excited about it. The ceramic donuts are absolutely fantastic and beautiful,” Ms. Porter said, “The more we did with the donuts for the donut shop, the more we were able to tie into our curriculum.”


The students started by doing design plans of what they wanted their own donuts to look like. They used phonemic awareness to recognize the sounds they heard to write the words they wanted to put on paper for their plan. They worked collaboratively to use art and engineering materials to create papier mache donuts, which involved using a multi-step process.

“The whole process was really great for them to understand what artists like Jae Yong Kim go through, that it’s not just a one-day thing. It takes time to make a meaningful work of art,” Ms. Porter said.

It even turned into a cultural exploration: Ms. Hahn (Lower School Computer Science Teacher), who is of Korean descent, talked to the class about the culture of South Korea, where the artist was born and where his exhibition is located.

The students documented their journey on the KB bulletin board, listing out all the steps they took and what they learned, and included references to Jae Yong Kim.

At the very end of their two-month journey with donuts, the students used their scientist skills to document how they used their five senses — what they saw, heard, smelled, touched, and of course, the best one — tasted!

Multifaceted learning experiences like this one help our littlest Huskies create the neural networks needed to stimulate deep learning. We’re dedicated to following the science behind education to ensure our students have the tools they need to become the best versions of themselves.


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