Third Graders Make Acorn Pancakes

As part of their recent social studies project, our third grade students made acorn pancakes with former Oak Grove Director, teacher, and current Board member Karen Hesli.

“It’s part of a two-month project where we’re learning about the Chumash people of this area,” third grade teacher Serra explains. “We’re studying what it’s like in a traditional Chumash village, and the kids will make dioramas and write reports about Chumash people.”

While the project is multi-faceted, comprising studies of Chumash cultural traditions, including games, myths, and basket weaving, this aspect was an interactive one.

Third grade students gathered acorns and cracked them open with grinding rocks. Karen then took the acorn meat, leached it for a week in water (to remove any bitterness), and then returned to Oak Grove to make pancakes with the kids, much to their delight.

Here’s a poem Karen wrote about the morning she spent with the third grade students:

The Pure Acorn-Ness of It

The clouds keep us
guessing as they wander undecidedly along…
While under the canopy,
She asks, What does an oak tree taste like?
Someone licks the tree
Another says
a meal from trees!
acorns and syrup!!
The tables!
Another: paper plates!
And clothes!
Even the air we breathe

Listening, the trees send leaves swirling in laughter
and add: ‘Whoosh! sooner than you think’
One small leaf lands atop
a bubbling pancake;
he decides to leave it,
to taste later….
Then the three griddles
begin to sputter..
Rain drops sizzle
alongside the batter.
They jump and squeal
with delight

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