Chinese Grocery Store field trip
We read this series of books last week, and it’s a fun set of stories. It’s about 3 brothers who are trying to solve different problems way back ages ago in China. They were popular enough I think we’ve read them a couple of times. Well, this inspired us to try and make noodles for our geography lesson this week, because according to this book, noodles were invented in China. However, the real lesson didn’t start until we went on a field trip to the Chinese Grocery store
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The book that inspired our eventual Chinese Grocery Store Field Trip
In The Story of Noodles, the Kang boys have been left alone again. They’ve been told to prepare the dumplings for the upcoming festival, but the boys accidentally invent a new dish: noodles! It’s a hit.
What went wrong: making our own noodles
We used the recipe found here. And as happens all too often when I try a new recipe I discovered a few details I had neglected to notice when deciding we were going to do this, mainly that after you mix you’re supposed to let it sit for two hours. Well, that was so not going to happen.
As you can see, it’s really a rather messy process. I was very glad for the pasta maker Jeff’s parents had given him at some point because rolling that out? No thank you, the only problem was the part that should have cut them into noodles wasn’t working right, so we had to hand slice them, and I figured out afterward I needed to cut thinner noodles.
I left some out overnight and the next morning Batman had quite a lot of fun shredding them into little bitty pieces.
But really, for something I had no idea what we were doing they turned out pretty yummy. I also promised Jeff no more deciding to try projects like this on weeknights, especially not if we have plans for other things that night.
My husband is a wise man, I really should not have tried it then, or at least not without learning more beforehand. Oh well, they were really yummy, and the other part of our excursion was a definite success.
Chinese Grocery Store Field Trip
Future Ticia here, this idea is obviously not limited to a Chinese Grocery store field trip. We happened to be studying China at the time, but have since then gone to an Indian grocery store, and there’s a new Korean market I’d love to try going to sometime.
We went to our local Chinese grocery store, now if we were in a bigger town I would say to learn about Asia (and more specifically China) head over to Chinatown, but we don’t have that, we have a shopping mall. So we head to our local Hong Kong Market and wandered through the stores.
They were absolutely intrigued by the different vegetables they had, and how we have some of the same vegetables at HEB.
But, the big hit of the trip?
The catfish tank. At HEB my kids always want to sit and gawk at the lobster tank. Now imagine this tank going from their eye level up to the ceiling and you’ve got the effect. They loved it.
Princess is also happy because I got her a new bigger teapot, I’m happy because I’m not having to refill it as often (so big secret here, if your little girl is a tea party maniac and you’re willing to let her have a ceramic pot, head over to your local Chinese grocery store, and they have great prices on teapots galore).
Oh, and here’s my favorite photo of the whole trip:
Isn’t that awesome?
Extending the learning beyond a Chinese Grocery Store Field Trip
Here are some questions to ask and things to talk about.
- What foods did both grocery stores have?
- What made this grocery store different?
- What smells did you notice? (Both of the ethnic grocery stores I’ve been to had different smells from the spices)
- Did this store have anything besides food at it?
- What foods might you buy here to try?
The big thing as you walk through the store, talk about what you see, and how it’s different and how it’s the same. You can learn a lot about a culture by where they shop.