Homeschooling gives us the unique opportunity to incorporate life skills learning into our curriculum, and to use extra-curricular activities to introduce and reinforce concepts in a variety of subjects. In this Homeschool Living, examine the importance of teaching nutrition in your homeschool; explore a variety of ways to teach concepts in math, science, economics, and more; and discover some great ways to teach life skills through food preservation for your family.
It’s no secret that harvesting and preserving your own fruits and vegetables is a time-consuming practice. When evaluating everything else you have going on in your homeschool and household, it may even seem like at-home food preservation isn’t worth the time. So why bother canning, drying, or freezing your own produce? Check out these ten reasons to preserve your own food! When you consider how many ways you can use the experience to teach economics, nutrition, agriculture, food safety, life skills, stewardship, and more, you’ll see how the practice of preserving your own food can become an invaluable part of your homeschool curriculum.
Preserving your own food at home, whether you grow your own produce in your home garden or frequent your local farmer’s markets or co-ops, gives you access to a number of nutritional benefits. Sourcing local produce and investigating the natural resources around you allow you to take advantage of a plethora of nutritional, economic, and community benefits. Check out these eight benefits of eating locally grown food for some inspiration to start planning your summer food preservation now.
Planning, Plants & Nutrition
The key to getting the most out of your at-home food preservation is planning. Knowing what produce you want to grow or source and its peak availability will allow you to plan ahead in collecting supplies you may need and setting aside time to complete the task, so that you can use and preserve your food’s at their most nutrient-dense stages and get the most out of your labor. This Seasonal Food Guide not only allows you to search for season details by state and produce type, but it also features fun facts, history, and cooking and usage tips for all different types of fruits, vegetables, and herbs.
Homeschool On The Range offers some great information on food preservation methods; pros and cons of canning, freezing, and drying fruits and vegetables; and tips for working with children. This is a great starting point for incorporating food preservation into your homeschool.
For more ways to incorporate nutrition and food preservation into your homeschool, check out this “Summer Harvest Homeschool Classroom” for ideas on harvest planning, books on nutrition and harvesting, and cooking tips and recipes.