6 Replies Latest reply on Oct 12, 2017 11:08 PM by Kurt VanDeWalle

    Feed Rations Lab - Pearson Square Practice


      got the initial idea from a post on here. Tweaked it to fix my needs. Basically i use cereals/ candy as the feeds. (I assign them after the students complete the punnett square so they don't get to choose the treats they eat. Its a surprise...which i like! =) 


      Feeds / Cereals I used  (Protien percents are pretty accurate, Prices I just threw in there)


      Corn = Corn Puffs

      Wheat = Puffed Wheat

      Wheat Straw = Puffed wheat covered in salt

      Granular Molasses = M&M's

      Soy Bean Meal - Fruity Pebbles

      Cotton Seed Meal - Coco Pebbles


      + I had them divide the lbs of each feed by 100 so that we could measure in grams and use electronic scales. WORKED WELL!!

      + Kids were creative in making their feed bags - lots of good feed names.

      + took about 90 minutes




      -The kids recommended that i use gummy bears, starburst, marshmellows next time. They wanted to candy rather than the cereal.

        • 1. Re: Feed Rations Lab - Punnet Square Practice
          Kurt VanDeWalle Champion

          I did a similar activity that University of Nebraska has for the 4-H quality assurance program.  Same concepts, different ingredients.  And there were 2 groups, 1 had specific amounts of each ingredient, the other had estimated amounts like a handful, a lot, or a few.


          However, I took it one more step, after they had the feed mixed, we "ground" the feed in a food processor (I used my 'magic bullet' from home).  We did this since we talked about processed feeds are more palatable and all the ingredients get mixed in and make it more balanced when they eat it and can't sort it out. After the feed has been ground, the students taste it and try to taste the different ingredients which were all in the same bite.  We used peanuts, chocolate, and pretzels, and they can usually taste each ingredient.  Of course, this works better with dry ingredients like the cereal you used.  We hot cinnamon candies which don't mix as well since they are harder, but they worked better than hot tamale candies which gummed up the blades.


          When I start the feed balancing unit, I start with a treat for the class, which are home baked cookies.  The first one they get is high in salt, not enough to make them sick but enough to make them taste bad.  I don't let them taste it until everyone has their cookie and I tell them to really taste it, don't just eat it.  They notice the salt in the first bite, usually, and throw the rest away.  Then I redeem my abilitiy to make cookies (or my wife's) and give them a good one, assuring them that it is good.  They remember this activity way past that unit.  The point I try to get across to them - if directions on mixing feed aren't followed, the feed could be less palatable and depending on the ingredient, could make the animal sick or less healthy.

          • 2. Re: Feed Rations Lab - Punnet Square Practice
            Amanda Hoover Mentor

            We did this lab today, and the kids loved it! Thanks for sharing!

            • 3. Re: Feed Rations Lab - Punnet Square Practice
              Kurt VanDeWalle Champion

              Wonderful to hear that!  Glad they enjoyed it.  Thanks for letting me know.

              • 4. Re: Feed Rations Lab - Punnet Square Practice
                McKena Wallentine Citizen

                I did this lab a few times and it turned out awesome! They kids really got into it and had a lot of fun. Great learning activity that involved food for motivation Thank you for sharing this!!

                • 5. Re: Feed Rations Lab - Pearson Square Practice
                  Amy Stephens Mentor

                  Just wondering if anyone can give some more specifics. How many rations did your kids make that day? Do they just get to do it once? How many boxes of cereal/ m&ms, etc did you buy? DO they work out several problems with the pearson square and then make just one bag of feed? Sorry, just trying to wrap my head around this before I do it. I have bought what I thought I needed, now Im second guessing myself on quantities. I don't want this to be a flop!

                  • 6. Re: Feed Rations Lab - Pearson Square Practice
                    Kurt VanDeWalle Champion

                    I'm probably too late in seeing this.  A box or bag of anything is enough for a class of 10-15 or so.  I just had each group do just 1 food mix.  The rest of the period can be using the Pearson square to balance rations.