SOY: Middle school kids learning how to "Churn and Burn" ice cream

ANCHORAGE (KTUU) Take one 7th period junior high class, add 12 quarts of ice cream, mix it all together and what do you get? "We call this class churn and burn" say's Tracy Collum, a teacher at Wasilla Middle School.

It's the rare class that has students literally champing at the bit, or in this case bite, to try. “It is the best class, I love it,” says 8th grader Ledger Lusk.

Each week students in the "Churn and Burn" class work together in teams to make a fresh new flavor of ice cream. It is a learning process and as such, results do vary. “Our first batch of vanilla ice cream did not go well at all," said Ms. Collum. That forced the students to learn from their mistakes, more closely follow the recipes, and then turn out a better product the following week.

While making the ice cream represents the "churn" component in this class there is also a "burn" component as well. That's where the kids spend time being active to burn off the empty calories that they've been consuming as taste testers of their product.

There are clear educational benefits to this class, from teamwork to following directions, to measuring and mixing ingredients and even some exercise but if something about this class still doesn't sit well with the adult in you don't worry. I felt it too. It was jealousy because if you could have been making ice cream in your 7th-period class back in junior high, isn't that exactly what you would have opted to do?

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