Success Criteria

6, 7, 8
Students clarify the goals and parameters of their project based on the call to action from Lesson One. They use critical-thinking and problem-solving skills to determine what they know about the project and what they need to know (questions/inquiry about the project). The teacher provides a rubric that guides the project and will be used for assessment.
PrintOne 50-Minute Session

The learner will:

  • collaborate to record what he or she knows and needs to know about the project.
  • use inquiry and critical thinking to define the parameters of the project.
  • narrow the focus of the project and determine the focus questions for the project.
  • review and highlight important aspects of the rubric.
Teacher Preparation 

Here are some questions that students may raise and that may become the focus of their investigations:

  1. What do our bodies need to thrive? What are the health-related implications of hunger?
  2. What are the challenges of producing food in various locations?
  3. What threats could keep us from producing enough food for our population?
  4. How do weather, pests, animal disease, lack of viable land affect producing crops, raising livestock and poultry and feeding people?
  5. How does food get from the farm to the table (farm workers, packaging, transportation, distribution, supermarket and restaurants)?
  6. What are the private/public sectors doing to address hunger?
  7. What affects the cost and availability of food?

As an exit ticket, have students write two of their top questions about hunger and food systems. As they leave the classroom, they hand the teacher their exit ticket (two questions written on any piece of paper).


 National School Reform Faculty. "Affinity Mapping Protocol"


  1. Tell the students that they are going to analyze what they already know and what they need to know in order to move forward with their project. Spending time on this helps students break down the project into tasks and gives them a sense that they are already partway done. Recognizing they already know some of the information gives them a boost of energy toward feeling successful.

  2. Have students review the Challenge Letter that they marked up in Lesson One. Tell them to write on the first part of the Knows and Need to Knows chart (handout one) what parts of the project they already know or have done.

  3. Next, give learners an opportunity to record questions they have about the project on the Need to Knows section of the handout. Remind them to refer to the letter as well as their discussions about the project.

  4. The Affinity Mapping activity ( helps students focus their questions and inquiry into a project. This may be done in conjuction with handout one. Give each student sticky notes to record questions they have about the project (based on Lesson One). Follow the Affinity Mapping protocol to have students group their questions by common threads. By the end of this activity, their questions will be organized and shared with all. The teacher can use this map to plan workshops to address the major themes of questions. (This is a great activity for giving introverts a voice and encourage interaction with all learners.)

  5. Note: Do not answer the students' questions in these activities. The questions will be answered throughout the project. It is valuable for students to see that their questions/needs guide the teacher's planning.

  6. Alternative: Use technology to complete the Knows and Need to Knows and mapping activities, usingGoogle Docs, Padlet, or TitanPad.

  7. Share the Rubric (handout three) to guide learners throughout the project and to communicate expectations for their final presentation. Tell the students that the issue of food insecurity is an overwhelming topic, so they will each focus on one aspect of the issue, using the rubric to guide their outcomes. Review the rubric so the learners understand expectations. Have them mark and code the rubric to highlight key ideas. Note that examining the rubric may create more "Need to Knows." Add those need to knows to the handout/chart to show learners that we will be learning and asking questions throughout the project.


The number of Need to Knows may help the teacher determine if he/she has created an atmosphere of inquiry. If great interest as been created, then there are a lot of questions an eagerness to get answers. If there does not seem to be a lot of Need to Knows or inquiry, the teacher may want to go back to some of the extension resources in Lesson 1 to help build intrigue.

Cross Curriculum 

IPARD is an acronym to describe the stages of the service-learning process. Click the link above to read more about the process. This PBL unit mirrors the IPARD stages over six lessons. To illustrate this, this Service Experience section highlights the part(s) of the IPARD process featured in the lesson. In this lesson, the students participate in the Preparation stage. Preparation - Get ready for taking action in service-learning by understanding what the challenge is and planning how it will be fulfilled.

Philanthropy Framework

  1. Strand PHIL.IV Volunteering and Service
    1. Standard VS 01. Needs Assessment
      1. Benchmark MS.1 Identify a need in the school, local community, state, nation, or world.
    2. Standard VS 02. Service and Learning
      1. Benchmark MS.1 Select a service project based on interests, abilities and research.
      2. Benchmark MS.2 Identify specific learning objectives from the academic core curriculum that are being applied in the service-learning project.