Covid-19 Update: Labs at Home

This information was shared with members on April 3, 2020

Writing Credit: Heather Bamford

As the COVID-19 crisis continues to transform our educational system in unprecedented ways, we wanted to send you some important reminders as we start to move towards a digital learning platform.

Provincial family studies colleagues have raised concerns about foods and fashion courses and distance learning. Please note that we CANNOT ask students to purchase ingredients or fabrics to do a lab at home as this may place hardships on families, especially those who may have recently experienced layoffs or income reductions (and ingredients/materials are far more expensive per serving when buying just for home rather than a full class), if the family is using a food bank, or make families feel they need to make a special trip to the store when people are being told to stay home.

Also be careful about asking students to film themselves cooking/sewing because of:
a) privacy concerns (having a teacher see in a student’s home), and
b) the facilities and equipment they have to prepare food at home (potential for feelings of embarrassment and shame)

Our advice is to focus on the theory and big ideas of the course as food preparation / sewing skills is only one strand of the curriculum, and the actual hands-on expectations are simply a fraction of those. Menu planning, sourcing recipes, creating grocery lists, making equipment list, planning preparation time, and identifying potential kitchen/food/lab safety concerns are potential alternatives.

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