What’s Happening in the Classroom: Developmental Science Class


This post is the first in The Community School’s new series of blog posts about what’s going in our classrooms and on our outings and hikes on a day to day basis. The first few posts will feature stories by various teachers in the School Program providing a snapshot of what TCS’s students are learning in their classes. Enjoy!

Our new topic for the month of November was pumpkins! To get us started we watched an episode of Alton Brown’s Good Eats about pumpkins that was featured on the Food Network. During this episode we learned that a pumpkin can actually serve as a baking dish because it allows heat to transfer while maintaining structural integrity. For this reason, the early Americans would use pumpkins to cook stews. After learning about the history and science behind pumpkins we talked about what experiments/recipes we’d like to try this month.IMG_3920

The participants decided on pumpkin pie so to  ensure there was enough time to cook and eat the pies I suggested we try making mini pumpkin pies. In order to build independent living skills we went to the grocery store so the participants could be in charge of shopping for our ingredients.  

The pies were easy to make and turned out great (recipe below)!IMG_4054


After we gave them a few finishing touches they looked beautiful and tasted fantastic!



Melissa Burton

Mini Pumpkin Pies:

3 boxes of pre made miniature tart shells (16 shells per box)
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 and 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 large egg
1 cup pure pumpkin puree
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 5-ounce can evaporated milk
whipped cream or Cool Whip

Preheat oven to 350. Line a couple of baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a medium bowl with an electric hand mixer, combine sugar, salt, pumpkin pie spice, egg, pumpkin, vanilla,and evaporated milk. Beat until well combined and smooth.

Line mini tart shells on prepared baking sheet. Using a small spoon, fill each mini tart shell with pumpkin pie filling.

Carefully transfer pan to preheated oven and bake for 15-17 minutes or until shells are golden and the filling appears to be set. Carefully remove mini pumpkin pies to a cooling rack.

Top with whipped cream or Cool Whip.

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