Pizz-A-Thon (research, explore, discover and create)

Courage Confidence Character Building



Educ. Model Pizz-A-Thon 5-18-12 See the many educational attributes of this program. 

Summary of Evaluations Over 16 Years: "I love the hands-on learning for the kids on so many different levels - team building, career communications, social studies and agriculture. Teams take ownership in creating an end product." 

Introduction to Stimulate Interest in the Pizz-A-Thon

Provide 2 or 3 pizzas�don�t show students the kind, ask them to tell what kind of pizza you have�first without tasting. (e.g.  sausage, hamburger, etc.). Let them taste-which do they like best and the least, an why? How many guessed correctly?  

Ask students to draw a picture of their favorite pizza topping and then draw a line from the picture of the topping to a picture of what they think it looked like before being placed on the pizza�where did it come from (origin)? Have students present their reports andhave a discussion on all the stages in between the source of origin and how it got to the pizza.

Ask students to select other ingredients and trace them to the soil and illustrate how each was produced. Ask them to name all the careers associated with this food and fiber industry.


-Cooking (baking) and Growing

  • Conducting a survey to determine various age groups' favorite pizza
  • Brainstorming to determine which ingredients would lead to a best selling � prize pizza�
  • Developing the �prize pizza� recipe
  • Tracing pizza back to the soil (farm or greenhouse)
  • Conducting an experiment growing sweet corn in sand or subsoil compared to topsoil and discovering the value of protecting our soil and water resources
  • Brainstorming to decide what would be the best logo to attract attention for their �prize pizza�
  • Designing a place mat to keep children occupied while they wait on their pizza
  • Baking and marketing their �prize pizza� (with a tasting and marketing contest)
  • Visiting a farm to see the source of ingredients in their �prize pizza�
  • Playing a game where teams (bid on and buy) a farm enterprise and determine which is most profitable

If you preferred, individuals and/or teams could keep their notes or reports on the Word documents below and they could be printed.  One can modify, delete or add activities.

Set the stage�get their attention-demonstrate with apple &  sweetcorn.

The apple demonstration in UNIT ONE, puts in perspective the Earth�s limited soils for food production. 

The apple demonstration in UNIT ONE, puts in perspective the Earth�s limited soils for food production. 

Hold up an Apple.

Cut � out of the apple (representing the portion that island. The � represents water on the earth�ocean , lakes and rivers. Then cut the land in half (1/2 of the � piece = 1/8 representing mountains, deserts where people live but not all this land can grow food). On this 1/8 portion of theapple, cut crosswise in four equal pieces representing 1/32 or 3.1 % of the Earth. Peel one of these four pieces and say this represents the small amount of the Earth that will grow food. So we must protect our soil from erosion. We live in a part of the world with that valuable topsoil sometimes referred to as the bread basket of the world.

Soil-Root Link To Conservation 4-27-12 Importance of Soil and water conservation! See Resource below to demonstrate the force of the raindrop as it hits unprotected soil surface and starts the erosion process. 

It takes many years to develop one inch. Engineers in road and construction site design, require the contractors to scrape off the topsoil, stockpile it and re-spread it over the newly constructed area.Why?...to get a stand of grass to grow�topsoil is valuable! Topsoil is extremely valuable for food production and Unit One allows children to explore and discover this important lesson.

To understand the value of conservation, it is best to have kids compare the growth of plants (like sweet corn) in top soil vs. subsoil or sand. There are sandy soils in parts of the Midwest, where topsoil has been eroded and farmers are planting into basically a sandy soil, so comparison of top soil growth to growth in sand is realistic. With all the severe erosion and flooding we have had, it behooves us to give children a general understanding of the importance of conservation. The uncontrolled raindrop erodes topsoil. As topsoil is washed off it takes nutrients and fertilizer with it causing flooding, pollution, channel, river and canal sediment cleanout�costing taxpayers billions of dollars.

UNIT ONE-Researching Soils (grow your pizza ingredients in good soils!) 

  • In preparation, click on the blog: javascript:nicTemp(); "Students Learn While Having Fun" page.  Also see the PIZZA EARTH LINK page on the blog. 

Which Soil Is Best For Growing Pizza Ingredients?   Soil is the foundation to your new business!

If sand is used in the plant/root Plexiglass box, rather than subsoil in comparing plant/root growth to topsoil, drill a hole inthe bottom of the sand side of the box, so the roots of the plant will not reach the water level and result in better growth than naturally growing in sandy soil. In sandy soil, the roots don�t have sufficient moisture as the rain percolates down through the profile of the soil beyond the roots of plants. If you do drill the hole in the sand side of the box so excess water drains out, place the Plexiglas box in a pan to collect the water. 

Student Plan UNIT ONE 5-18-12 Explore and discover quality soil and gain an appreciation for protecting it.

Student Plan UNIT TWO 5-18-12 Research as to what is the best pizza for the future. 

Student Plan UNIT THREE 5-18-12 Develop a logo, placemat and marketing  your ideas for promoting your �Prize Pizza�and Pizzeria

Student Plan UNIT FOUR 5-18-12 Prepare for competition -judging and or demonstrating.


Research Documents

Soil-Root Link To Conservation 4-27-12 Importance of Soil and water conservation! The force of the raindrop as it hits an unprotected soil surface starts the erosion process.

Web Page Conservation 4-4-12 Answers to Soil and Water Conservation Questions.

 Tracing Pizza Flow Chart 4-7-12 Trace ingredients from �slice to soil.�

Food and Fiber Cycle 5-17-12 Trace the different stages of food and the many careers involved in creating your �PrizePizza.�

Logo  placemat 4-8-12 Be creative in designing your pizzeria logo and placemat to attract attention, providing fun activities as kids wait for their pizza.

Research Market Your Pizza 4-8-12 It isimportant that your marketing research team be creative in attracting customers in wanting to eat your �Prize Pizza.� 

 www.zunal.com/webquest.php?w=105657 Echo Hill -Linn/Mar School District, Sarah Russell, Teacher. (She developed this website for her students to use in preparing for the Pizz-A-Thon.)

Kids may want to use this website in their Pizz-A-Thon research(crop-meat-pizza ingredient web sites). Sarah Russell's Echo Hill ElementarySchool, Marion IA class of 73 fourth graders composed of 12 teams competed in the 2012 Cedar Rapids Area Pizz-A-Thon.

Team Assignments (it is important that each member contribute)

Consider different individual assignments that team members can work on and allow individuals to choose their assignments, such as: track one or more ingredients back to its origin, make a chart, take pictures for the report, determine the cost, look at different sales approaches that can be used in the presentation, look at nutritional values in producing the ingredients, determine how to insure food safety in producing and processing ingredients, determine the kind of food processing involved, determine what science concepts are used in the producing and processing of pizza, determine kinds of career opportunities associated with producing, processing, distributing and marketing, edit the final report, make assignments on how each person will be involved in presenting the marketing report.

 Generalize: Appreciate how several members of a team can arrive at many more ideas than just one person. How do you plan to use teamwork in the future? Can you think of an example how teamwork is essential to being successful? Why it is so important for every member of a team to contribute?

A SAMPLE Boy or Girl Scout EVENT:   
"Get a Slice of The Action Workshop"  

Create a "Prize Pizza" trace ingredients to the farm, greenhouse or garden.

Date:           Register by ________ (to allow 30 days for ordering T shirts)
9:00 a.m.     Registration-name tags-T shirts provided to each girl (logo on front, sponsors names
                      on back). 
9:30 a.m.   "Hands on" activities in creating a pizza and tracing ingredients back to their origin.
11:30 a.m.   Judging and Awards
12:00 noon Pizza Party (award a Pizza Party Patch)

Market your "Prize Pizza" and plan a pizza party for your family and friends.

Date:        Register by ________ (to allow 30 days for ordering T shirts)
1:00 p.m.  Registration-name tags-T shirts provided each scout (logo on front, sponsors names on back). 1:30 p.m. "Hands on" activities developing a logo and place mat for your new Pizzeria business.
4:00 p.m.  Judging and Awards
4:30 p.m.  Pizza Party (girls awarded a Pizza Party Patch)

Bake your "Prize Pizza" and have a tasting contest.

Date:          Register by ________ (to allow 30 days for ordering T shirts)
9:00 a.m.    Registration-name tags-T shirts provided each scout (logo on front, sponsors names on back). 9:30 a.m.   "Hands on" activities in creating a pizza and tracing ingredients back to their origin.
11:30 a.m.   Judging and Awards
12:00 noon Pizza Party (award a Pizza Party Patch) and continued activities.
1:00 p.m.    Preparing Pizzas and marketing report (to include logo and place mat). Assign team 
                     members to different activities based on the interest of individuals).
3:30 p.m.    Judging and Awards
Name_________________________ Address_____________________________
Tel#________________Troop_____                 _____________________________
Leader______________ Tel. #___________  Email __________________
Cost: $15 (send check to _______________________________________________)
(At the workshop, troops will receive $5 refund per scout in attendance and stipend if approved through a sponsor....email [email protected]  for details.)

Consider Showcasing Your Program. One example, you and other participants could feature the three top �Prize Pizzas� and display place mats and logos at a Scout Expo or the county fair. FFA or 4-H livestock and vegetables could be integrated into the program to make the connection of pizza to the farm. Or you could arrange for a separate community day to showcase your program.

A �Sample Our Prize Pizzas Night� could be held where all troop pizzas were prepared and friends and relatives could sample to determine their favorite or the night could be held with a charge for each slice of pizza purchased or free will offering for a money making activity. ________________________________________________________________________

Contact: For Earning Stipend as Pizz-A-Thon Coordinator:  email [email protected].

The blog site   javascript:nicTemp() will give you background information, pictures, a place to record your journal highlights and an opportunity for you to ask questions.  See the blog "Students Learn While Having Fun" (bottom of page) for example of Resource Word Documents (charts) associated with activities.    

If you preferred, individuals and/or teams could keep their notes or reports on the Word documents below and they could be printed. One can modify, delete or add activities.

Alternative Source of Resouces - Charts For Research Activities on "Students Learn While Having Fun" page of:  javascript:nicTemp()

Happy Joe's Pizza, and Linn, Scott and Rock Island IL County Farm Bureaus have been annual sponsors. 

Application-OrderForm 5-18-12 Participant and Sponsor Application Form and Order form for T shirts, medallions and plant-root observation box.

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