Class Activity: From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E. L. Konigsburg
by Alexie Basil
When Claudia and Jamie prepared for their stay at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, they left out a key item: snacks. We aren’t going to let you fall into the same trap.
Here is a simple, fast recipe for trail mix that your class can throw together before a field trip. Building it together presents a great opportunity to introduce students to the idea of giving their body the fuel it needs through a balance of carbs, proteins, and vitamins…and, of course, a hint of sugar.
Trail mix is incredibly flexible and can accommodate any food intolerances or allergies. Plus it’s easy to carry, which makes it great for field trips. When selecting ingredients for an energizing snack, it’s important to hit different food groups.
Some great options here are whole-grain cereals, pretzels, or popcorn.
Some classic trail-mix nuts are almonds and peanuts, but you can also consider options like cashews, pecans, walnuts, and pistachios.
If a student in your class has a nut allergy—or your school prefers to avoid nuts anyway—a great alternative is seeds. Two good choices are sunflower and pumpkin seeds. Another option is dried soybeans.
In the case of trail mix, fruit is an easy toss-in to add some vitamins to the snack. Some common choices are banana chips, raisins, dried cranberries, apple chips, and dried apricots.
TIP: Be mindful of whether the fruit is just dried or has been candied.
Some common choices are chocolate chips; peanut-butter chips (assuming peanuts aren’t a problem); raisins, nuts, or pretzels covered in chocolate or yogurt; or candy-coated chocolate.
TIP: If your students keep their snacks at the bottom of their bags on a hot day, chocolate may melt.
Putting It All Together
Now for the fun part! There are countless creative combinations you can throw together to make delicious and balanced field-trip fuel.
Here are the ingredients we chose:
• Pretzel sticks (salted)
• Almonds (roasted, unsalted)
• Banana chips
• Candy-coated chocolate
As a classroom activity, students can build their own field-trip fuel and learn what each ingredient provides for their bodies. If resources allow, it can be fun for students to choose between different options in each category. Either way, your class will be much more prepared than Claudia and Jamie were!
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