STEAM Learning Lab and Food.

Dates that it took place:  21/4/2021 – 23/4/2021

Name: Kristi Folia

Exact topic:The main idea of STEAM Learning Lab activity is to engage students in STEAM experiments based on food materials and their properties, in fun and stimulating way and in parallel το teach them responsible consumption and production in order to build sustainable society.

The project consists of the following three activities: 1st Activity: Food waste: a renewable energy source (biogas), 2nd Activity: GMOs Food VS Organic Food, 3rd Activity: Sustainability and Citizenship Tic- Tac – Toe Game (AI). These activities connect learning with real life and integrate the 4Cs skills which prompt students to think critically and creatively, to collaborate and communicate effectively.Students need these specific skills to fully participate in today’s global community, be able to share their thoughts, questions, ideas and solutions, to become active, responsible and engaged citizens.

Description of activities

1st Activity: Food waste: a renewable energy source (biogas) Aims: 1)experiment and discover the energy of food, 2)awareness of the 7th Sustainable Goal Development (Affordable and clean energy) Biogas has gained popularity in recent years as a “greener” fuel. Biogas is a type of biofuel naturally produced from the decomposition of organic matter. When this organic matter is exposed to an environment without oxygen they free a blend of gases. Students working in teams, get involved in a conceptual mapping activity learning about the energy of food and discuss the below infographic about biogas process.

Source: Waste-to-Energy

At the experiment phase, students collaborate. They bring food waste in the classroom and put them in a plastic bottle which must not be filled. Students cover the top of the bottle with a balloon. After 5-7 days, the balloon inflates. That means, food waste can produce biogas which today is a more sustainable solution than traditional natural gas, we should consider it as an important transition fuel on the road to completely decarbonizing our energy supply.

2nd Activity: GMOs Food VS Organic Food Aims: 1) learn the differences between Genetic Modified Organisms – GMOs food and organic using S.W.O.T analysis tool 2) awareness of the 3rd Sustainable Goal Development (Good Health and Well – Being) and 12th Sustainable Goal Development (Responsible consumption and production) 3) build a model of a GMO food. Brainstorming: what is the meaning of the book title “Full Planet – Empty plates” ? (video) Student talk about: poverty – food waste – pollution – over consumption – over population – human rights – children rights.

Students get engaged with the debate on how the world would provide food to meet its growing populations continues to take centre stage in the development space. A Student debate has the capacity to both deeply engage the students in relevant learning, and to encourage students to be deep thinkers. Introduction of GMOs food.


Is GMO a future option of sustainable global food supply? Lets find out with S.W.O.T analysis tool.


There are various ethical issues associated with Genetic Motified Organisms (GMOs).Some GMO plants have actually been modified to improve their nutritional value. In addition, World Resources Institute notes that GMOs and genetically modified food are going to be an important tool for feeding a global population that is expected to reach 10 billion people by 2050 but on the other hand some ethical concerns have been raised about GM crops like potential harm to human health; potential damage to the environment

BuildIing models: GMOs Food VS Organic Food Students experiment with food, changing color – shape, imagining new properties by converting it into GMOs food.

3rd Activity: Sustainability and Citizenship Tic- Tac – Toe Game Aims: 1) experiment with Artificial Intelligence Tic-Tac-Toe game (online), 2)awareness of 17 SDG, and specific the 3rd Sustainable Goal Development (Good Health and Well – Being) and 12th Sustainable Goal Development (Responsible consumption and production), 3) design and create a Tic-Tac-Toe game with recycle materials.

Lets play!! Artificial Intelligence VS Tic – Tac – Toe TIC-TOC-TOE vs AI (online). Students start to play, track how many times each one  won and how many times the game ended tie. At this step, teacher asks who is the other player on computer.  A Brainstorming process follows and students discover that AI trained to do one specific task and teacher points out that usually an AI can do one specific task very well.

Introduction of Artificial Intelligence to students: applications of AI in daily life. Students learn how Artificial Intelligence can improve Citizen Services and contribute to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. (e.g. A.I can help food companies, facing pressure from climate change, feed a growing global population with greater efficiency, e.g AI can enable smart and low-carbon cities encompassing a range of interconnected technologies such as electrical autonomous vehicles and smart appliances that can enable demand response in the electricity sector.Source: The role of artificial intelligence in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals)

Source: Artificial Intelligence Applications

Students create a Tic – Tac – Toe game with recycled materials to practice  Sustainability and Citizenship vocabulary.The game includes 25 food pictures. Students get seperated in two teams. Each food picture has a key word about Sustainable Development Goals and Citizenship. One correct response put in the plate and one square belongs to them.


Schools play a critical role in educating students. One of the most fundamental roles of school in society is to teach and socialize young people on how to be active members of our democratic society. Engaging young people in public life is essential if we are to build and advance a democratic culture. A powerful democracy mostly depends on the development of active democratic citizenship.Students are Change Agents in the Community, in the Society and in the World.