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Food Safety Essentials
Becky Moulder
GRIT 654
Learner Demographics
This course is designed for adult learners
who work in food service, management, or
It is also intended to teach basic food safety
to healthcare workers and public health
officials responsible for tracking food recalls.
Integration of Technology
This mini unit will utilize the following types of
YouTube videos
Online Quiz
Online Crossword
Course Objectives
Understand proper hand washing techniques and kitchen
sanitation practices.
Identify foods that must be kept separated and sources of
potential cross-contamination.
Understand correct minimum food temperatures, how to check
food temperatures, and identify the “danger temperature zone
Recognize correct refrigeration and freezer temperatures.
Identify foods that must be promptly chilled.
Demonstrate knowledge of food safety essentials by creating as
a group a plan to prepare a hypothetical dinner for 150 guests.
Before we begin . . .
Let’s see how much you already know about food handling and
safety by taking the food safety quiz available here:
Lesson Schedule
This course will consist of 4 lessons
based on the 4 key steps of food
safety. The 4 steps are:
Lesson 1: Clean
Objective: Understand proper hand washing techniques
and kitchen sanitation practices.
Read: We all know to wash our hands before preparing food and to wash
away any visible dirt on produce, but thorough cleaning, especially on often
forgotten surfaces, is an essential first step to food preparation.
Cutting boards, especially wooden ones, can harbor bacteria and need to
be thoroughly cleaned after each use. Plastic and acrylic cutting boards
are less porous, durable, and inexpensive to replace often. Sanitize
cutting boards by pouring boiling water over them and allowing them to
air dry completely. Alternatively, you may use a solution of 1 tablespoon
bleach to 1 gallon water instead of the boiling water.
Clean knives and all kitchen utensils using hot soapy water, making sure
no food particles remain.
Lesson 1: continued . .
Wipe all kitchen equipment before and after each use using a clean damp
towel or paper towel. Do not reuse towels as they may spread bacteria.
Clean up spills and splatters immediately; this will make them much
easier to remove and will also preventing slipping in the kitchen.
Wash all produce, even fruits and vegetables with a rind or that you
intend to peel, under cold running water and scrub to remove any dirt.
Fruit such as cantaloupe can harbor bacteria and dirt in the rind; cutting
through the rind can transfer the bacteria to the flesh of the fruit.
Watch: USDA-produced video about cleaning food available here.
Lesson 1: continued . .
Watch: Check out this video produced by the Center for Disease Control
(CDC) to understand the importance of hand washing and disease
Activity: Blog—Do you think a lack of proper hand washing is a problem?
What are some of the challenges to getting people do it regularly?
Lesson 2: Separate
Objective: Identify foods that must be kept separated
and sources of potential cross-contamination.
Read: Use separate cutting boards for produce, poultry, red meat, and
seafood. Different colored boards that correspond to each food make
this an easy task.
Keep raw seafood, poultry, and meat away from produce and other
items in the refrigerator. To prevent meat/seafood juices from
dripping onto other foods, wrap these items tightly in plastic, place
them in a plastic resealable bag, and keep these items on the bottom
shelf of the refrigerator.
Use separate utensils to cut and cook raw foods and serve cooked
Lesson 2: continued . .
Watch: USDA’s video on food separation.
Learn more about proper storage for different fruits and
vegetables here.
Activity: Play the Cross-Contamination Crossword Puzzle
Lesson 2: continued . .
Lesson 3: Cook
Objective: Understand correct minimum food
temperatures, how to check food temperatures, and
identify the “danger temperature zone range.”
Read: It is important to cook foods like meat, seafood, poultry, and eggs
thoroughly to kill any bacteria that may be contained in the raw food,
particularly those present in the juices. Salmonella and e. Coli are two of the
most common food pathogens, and both have many different strains that
can make people sick.
The elderly, young children, pregnant women and people who are
immunocompromised are especially at risk for becoming sick.
Review this information from CDC regarding preventing Salmonella
infections and other foodborne illnesses:
Lesson 3: continued . .
Listen: The following podcast, “Making Food Safer to Eat,” is produced by
the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and contains important information on
specific pathogens that may be present in food.
Watch: USDA video on cooking food to safe temperatures
Review: A list of minimum cooking temperatures for a variety of foods is
available here:
Lesson 3: continued . .
Activity: Blog—”What are
the consequences of
foodborne illness? Think in
terms beyond just the physical
symptoms (e.g., health
professionals, food
manufacturers, farmers, etc.)
Who is affected?”
Lesson 4: Chill
Objective: Recognize correct refrigeration and freezer
temperatures. Identify foods that must be promptly
Lesson: Refrigerate all perishable and/or cooked foods within two
hours of preparation. Immediately refrigerate items containing dairy.
Do not refreeze meats that have been allowed to thaw.
Marinate meat in a tightly sealed bag in the refrigerator.
Remember that refrigeration slows, but does not completely stop
the growth of bacteria. Discard leftovers after 3 days.
Freezing food stops the growth of bacteria. Be sure to tightly wrap
items in the freezer to prevent “freezer burn.” Freezer burned
foods are still safe to eat when properly thawed and cooked, but
the taste and texture may be affected.
Lesson 4: continued . .
Watch: USDA video on proper food refrigeration
Activity: Use a handheld infrared
thermometer to check out the different
temperatures of foods in your home
refrigerator, office lunch room, and food at
restaurants. Record your results in a chart,
stating what food you checked, the location
of the food, the ideal temperature the food
should be, and the actual temperature. Write
a blog post describing your findings. Did
anything surprise you? Shock you?
Final Project
Objective: Demonstrate knowledge of food safety essentials
by creating a plan to prepare a hypothetical dinner for 150
Activity: Your team is responsible for planning, preparing,
cooking, and serving a hypothetical dinner for 150 guests
visiting your company.
 Create a plan for choosing the menu, organizing what
equipment you will need, how you will prepare the food,
and what precautions/steps you will need to take to
ensure proper food temperatures and safety.
 Share your presentation to the event committee using
an interactive whiteboard. You may include additional
videos, podcasts, and web tools to present your plan.
I included an activity in which students test the temperatures of foods using an
infrared thermometer because it contributes to higher learning. Students are
asked to perform research and describe the reasons for their results.
The food safety videos from USDA were included because they are short and
light-hearted, which I think makes them easy to remember.
The final project requires students to work as a team and develop a large-scale
food safety plan using the information they just learned. The project involves
critical thinking and encourages them to anticipate potential problems.
There are a few links in each lesson to important web resources. Students are
not expected memorize the correct minimum cooking temperature for every
food, but can instead rely on “fingertip knowledge,” described in Curtis Bonk’s
The World Is Open on pg. 57. Fingertip knowledge can be more effective than
memorization when it involves information that changes frequently.
Beginning (1 point)
Developing (2 points)
Proficient (3 points)
Organization &
Information is poorly arranged
and difficult to navigate.
Information is somewhat difficult to
navigate; key topics may be hidden or out
of order
Information is effectively arranged in a logical order. Key
topics are easy to find; website is user-friendly
Visual Appeal
Lacks attraction to users; poor
use of design aesthetics and
Utilizes basic layout design and format;
lacks color scheme or font consistency
Design aesthetics (color, size, fonts) and layout are engaging
and attractive; utilizes appropriate graphics
Does not encourage sharing of
information between users;
Somewhat interactive; information sharing Encourages sharing of ideas and group work between users;
between users may be limited
highly interactive
Use of Technology Lacks effective use of variety of Utilizes some appropriate technologies;
Effectively utilizes a variety of appropriate technologies,
may lack variety; technologies may not be which may include videos, podcasts, games, discussion
user-friendly or seem relevant to the topic boards and live chats
Connection to
Prior Knowledge
Does not establish connections
to user’s previous learning
Relates to user’s previous learning but
does not establish strong connection to
new information
Builds on user’s previous learning to create strong
connections to new ideas and topics; focuses on user
comprehension; encourages higher learning
Does not encourage learner
Engagement/Moti involvement or motivation;
reasons for learning are not
Stimulates learning but user is not fully
involved in the process; the user may not
understand why the information is
important; may be visually appealing but
fail to capture user’s attention.
Highly stimulates and encourages genuine learning; learner
understands why the information is important and is
thoroughly involved in the process; establishes higher
learning objectives
Contains minor spelling, punctuation, or
Contains no spelling, punctuation, or grammatical errors;
grammatical errors; uses casual tone or
uses professional tone and correct tense; contains no
incorrect tense; may contain some broken broken links
Significant spelling, punctuation,
or grammatical errors; uses
inappropriate tone and/or
tense; contains several broken
Assessment/Feed Evaluation criteria for successful
course completion are not
Evaluation criteria for successful course
completion are mentioned but not clearly
Evaluation criteria for successful course completion are
clearly defined and accurately measure the user’s
I think that this course meets the criteria of the rubric because it firsts
determines what the user’s prior knowledge is using a food safety
quiz, and then new, more detailed information is provided.
Students are required to use the information they learned in each
lesson with an interactive assignment at the end. The activities were
chosen to promote higher learning and reasoning. Beyond the facts
they are presented, I want students to understand the impact of a
lack of food safety, and why prevention is so importance. The blog
posts and final project require them to apply knowledge and work
collaboratively to create a plan and anticipate potential challenges.
This mini unit effectively integrates several different forms of
interactive technology that support the course objectives.
Food Network. “Storing Fruits and Vegetables.”
Minnesota Department of Health. “Prevent Cross-Contamination.”
New York Times Company. “Quiz: Food Safety and Sanitation.”
United States. Center for Disease Control. “Put Your Hands Together.”
United States. Department of Agriculture. Food Safety and Inspection Service. Food
Safety Education. “Check Your Steps!”
 USDA Food Safety Videos.