Food Trucks in Middle School



Food Trucks in Middle School

by Genie Stringer

Middle School Math Teacher, Bornblum Jewish Community School

Click Here to Watch Project Video.

As a math teacher, it is sometimes difficult for me to justify in my own mind the time and effort it takes to complete a project compared to the time and effort it would take to simply complete a test or quiz; however, then I read the self-reflection words of my students and understood all of the important lessons that are learned through a project. I thought I might share a few of their responses with you. This is what they found out, thought was interesting, or still wondered about. I share this to brighten your day the way the students brightened mine.

 

  • “It’s difficult to manage money.”
  • “I wonder if we could work better as a group if we tried.”
  • “There are more parts to a business than I thought.”
  • “I might want to actually do a business like this.”
  • “Excel is helpful when it comes to doing a budget.”
  • “Time moves faster than I thought.”
  • “I wonder how many products I would actually sell.”
  • “I found out why food trucks price things at what they price them at.”
  • “Always take others’ ideas into account.”
  • “It takes a lot of work and effort to start your own food truck.”
  • “Creating a food truck isn’t just about the food.”
  • “Starting a food truck requires a lot of math.”
  • “There are a lot of ways to get money for your business.”
  • “You can pay your loans off through time, not just in one month.”
  • “You have to plan your work before actually doing it.”
  • “Ideas for good projects come from simple things.”
  • “Working with others can be inspiring.”
  • “How do the investors have enough money to both invest in food trucks and also manage to have a good quality of life?”
  • “I found it interesting how much time you need to plan ahead. Like if it takes 6 hours to make chicken, when do you make it?”
  • “Finally, I found out how to make a business.”

The students worked hard to complete this first major project. Many of them learned how important it is to find compromise and to listen to others on their team. They were challenged to learn new ways to think about business, to build a budget, and to use their knowledge about variables and negatives. I often hear adults saying how they never use what they learned in math, but these students discovered how to apply their recent concepts to real-life circumstances. They were also challenged to research, to delegate, and to manage their time; all of which are skills that are stressed in Bornblum’s Middle School classrooms. Projects are never easy because everyone gets frustrated when they are challenged, but the lessons that are learned are ones that our students can take out into the world with them…and maybe even teach us a thing or two.


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