The Grain Chain

Posts Tagged ‘Resources’

Drought declaration in East of England may reduce crop yields

Friday, June 10th, 2011

A drought will be declared later today (Friday 9 June) in parts of the East Midlands and East Anglia.  The Government says that certain parts of the surrounding areas are experiencing their driest spring conditions since 1990.

The Environment Secretary, Caroline Spelman, will hold a ‘drought summit’ today involving farmers, water companies, the Met Office, and business and environmental groups to review the impacts of the weather and discuss strategies.

Farmers in the Fens have offered to irrigate crops at night which would reduce evaporation thereby using less water.

The National Farmers’ Union says the drought could reduce yields of wheat and barley in affected areas by up to 20 per cent; but added that this was unlikey to change food prices as these are determined globally.

grainchain.com has a number of complementary resources to this story.  They are all free of charge, easy to download and mostly available in an editable format.  Why not explore with your students how their food is grown; how farmers manage productivity today with sustainability tomorrow; the contribution farming makes to the economy; and the UK wheat market.  Housed within two sections on sustainable development, these resources are written for 11-14 and 14-16 age ranges. 

Also, for the 14-16 age group we have developed a podcast where teenager Katie explores food prices and food shortages.

Eating breakfast helps weight maintenance

Thursday, May 26th, 2011

An article published in Obesity journal found that eating breakfast reduces food cravings, while those that skip breakfast can end up snacking and overeating, especially at night.

Currently it is thought that as many as six out of 10 adolescents skip breakfast; so researchers at the University of Missouri conducted a three-week study of a group of teenagers who usually skip breakfast.  One group continued to miss breakfast while the other group now consumed a 500-calorie breakfast containing cereal and milk.  At the end of each week volunteers completed a questionnaire and underwent a brain scan. 

Finding show that those who ate breakfast felt fuller and less hungry throughout the day than breakfast skippers.  Brain scans show that breakfast eaters experienced less activity in the areas responsible for controlling food motivation and reward.

grainchain.com has several related resources for various age groups.  For 7-11 and 11-14 year olds we have complete sections on balancing energy input with energy output which also includes a section to design ones own breakfast.