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Environment Events - Wed, 11/09/2016 - 2:35pm
Wednesday, November 9, 2016 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM

Leadership Academy Pillar: Member Choice: PURPOSEFUL or PROFESSIONAL

This workshop is for women students in Engineering and Business. It will teach you how to determine what employers are paying for the job you want when you graduate and how to negotiate to be paid what you are worth doing that job. 
Participants will learn about salary resources they can use and will have the opportunity to discuss negotiation dynamics in roundtables with professional women from industry and 
academia at the conclusion of the session. Dinner will be provided!

This event is offered in partnership through the COE’s Program for Women & Minorities, the COE Leadership Academy, and the COB Career Success Center.

Register here for this session.

Leadership Academy members DO NOT register through the Leadership Academy Portal for this event, instead register here. The attendance will be recorded via the Leadership Academy Portal and follow up surveys will become available in your account.

2016 OSU Extension Land Steward Training

Forestry Events - Wed, 11/09/2016 - 2:35pm
Wednesday, November 9, 2016 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Visit our website for details and registration here.

·        -Have land but not sure how to take care of it? 

·        -Need a plan for your property? 

·        -New to the area?

·        -Thinking of purchasing land?

The award winning Land Stewards training helps local small-acreage landowners learn about ways to create a healthy environment on their property.  The program incorporates weekly field classes, presentations from natural resource professionals, and the creation of a personalized management plan. This program is great for land owners who want to learn or enhance or develop land management skills as a part of their rural lifestyles. 

The 11-week training covers topics such as wildfire risk reduction, woodland and forest management, natural vegetation and wildlife, rivers and stream ecosystems, pasture management, soils and organic waste, small acreage systems and infrastructure, economics and enterprise on your land, stewardship planning and much more!

Weekly classes will meet at OSU Extension at 569 Hanley Road, Central Point

Wednesday afternoons, September 7th – November 16; 12:00-5:00pm

Protecting your Well & Septic System

Small Farms Events - Wed, 11/09/2016 - 2:35pm
Wednesday, November 9, 2016 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Amy Patton, Hydrologist   ($5 discount with OSU vol. badge) Learn how to keep your well water clean and how to maintain your septic system.  Bring 1 cup of well water to discover your    Nitrate concentration and how they fit with Nitrate levels in the valley.     
Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Under Pressure: Evolutionary Oddities in the Fungal World

Forestry Events - Tue, 11/08/2016 - 2:36pm
Tuesday, November 8, 2016 7:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Presented by Noah Siegel, mushroom expert, photographer and author

Tax Assessments for Rural Properties and Noxious Weed Management

Forestry Events - Tue, 11/08/2016 - 2:36pm
Tuesday, November 8, 2016 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Have you recently purchased a rural property or are looking to purchase rural property?  This survey workshop series is meant to introduce relevant issues regarding land ownership and provide answers and tips from local experts for new property owners to be successful land managers!

For more information, http://www.yamhillswcd.org/LandStewardshipWorkshopSeries 

Land Stewardship Workshop Series

Small Farms Events - Tue, 11/08/2016 - 2:36pm
Tuesday, November 8, 2016 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Land Stewardship Workshop Series

Have you recently purchased a rural property or are looking to purchase rural property?  This survey workshop series is meant to introduce relevant issues regarding land ownership and provide answers and tips from local experts for new property owners to be successful land managers!

November 8th, 6-8pm : Tax Assessments for Rural Properties and Noxious Weed Management

Presented by :  Scott Maytubby and Derrick Wharff, Current and Incumbent Yamhill County Tax Assessor and Michael Crabtree, Yamhill SWCD

Cost: $15/class  **Cost includes dinner**

Location: Chemeketa Community College McMinnville

Campus: 288 NE Norton Ln, McMinnville, OR 97128

To Register Online Please visit: Yamhillswcd.org 

To Register by Phone please call : (503) 472-6403



Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

WOWNet Retreat

Forestry Events - Sun, 11/06/2016 - 2:36pm
Friday, November 4, 2016 - Sunday, November 6, 2016 (all day event)

Join other WOWNet members for a weekend at beautiful Silver Falls State Park participating in workshops such as tree id, how to hire a logger, invasive insect management, wildlife habitat, non-timber forest products, and much more.

Register by October 18th by contacting Tiffany Fegel and hurry, space is limited!

2016 National Convention of the Society of American Foresters

Forestry Events - Sun, 11/06/2016 - 2:36pm
Wednesday, November 2, 2016 - Sunday, November 6, 2016 (all day event)

Forests form the fabric of the landscapes of Wisconsin and the Great Lakes area, influencing generations of foresters and figuring prominently in the cultures, traditions, and economies of the region. Madison is central to a robust Midwestern forestry community that offers a rich history, a legacy of pioneering forestry environmentalism, and an active contemporary forestry industry. It is a vibrant, safe, walkable capital city that is home to the University of Wisconsin and the world-renowned USFS Forest Products Lab.

The 2016 SAF National Convention will explore the rich history of forestry, land stewardship, and the connections that unite all who create, manage, use, and conserve forests and associated resources to meet desired goals, needs, and values.

For more information,  http://www.xcdsystem.com/safconference/website/

Field to Market Workshop Series -Douglas County

Small Farms Events - Sun, 11/06/2016 - 2:36pm
Sunday, November 6, 2016 1:00 PM - 4:30 PM

Field to Market Workshop Series - Fall 2016

Lacto-Fermented Foods (sauerkraut, kimchi, etc.)
Nov. 6th 1-4:30 pm
Douglas County OSU Extension kitchen
Topics covered: Types of lacto-fermented foods, where to find recipes, food safety and critical canning steps, labeling and recordkeeping requirements, hands-on sauerkraut making, taste test pickles and sauerkraut and made with cucumbers and cabbages grown in Small Farms variety trials.

Acidic Foods (jams, jellies, fruit syrups, etc.)
Nov. 20th 1-4:30 pm
Douglas County OSU Extension kitchen
Topics covered: Types of acidic foods, where to find recipes, critical canning steps, labeling and recordkeeping requirements, hands-on jam making, taste test acidic foods.

Registration details Field to Market Essentials*
$15 for one individual; $25 for two farm business partners.
* This workshop is required if you want to take any of the hands-on workshops.
Hands-on Value-Added Products Workshops (Acidified, Dehydrated, Lacto-fermented & Acidic) are $30 each ($25 each if you take more than one hands-on workshop)
Space is limited in the hands-on workshops. Sign-up early!
Fees includes worksheets and handouts, materials for hands-on activities, hours of detailed instruction led by Extension Faculty and successful local farmers, and refreshments at each session.
To register go to: extension.oregonstate.edu/douglas/
or contact Coleen Keedah at 541-672-4461
Questions? Contact Sara Runkel at 541-236-3049 sara.runkel@oregonstate.edu Douglas County OSU Extension Office, 1134 SE Douglas Ave. Roseburg, OR 97470

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Classroom in View

Terra - Tue, 11/01/2016 - 4:36pm

By Abby Metzger

A GAZE into the Future

IN THE FRAMED MAP OF THE UNITED STATES that Jamon Van Den Hoek keeps in his office, black lines crisscross the landscape in puzzle fashion. They arch around mountains, curve across rivers and skirt lakeshores. Then, they converge and cluster around big cities like knots in a shoelace. It’s a map of roads in America, he explains. Though the image is striking in its simplicity, Van Den Hoek, a geographer in the College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences, knows it is out of date. The map is single and unchanging, more archive or artwork than truth.

But Van Den Hoek has questions. What if a classroom could have a massive, digital projection of the map, layered with years of data on light pollution or urban expansion? What if students could explore these data at different spatial and temporal scales, witnessing landscape change in almost real time using images collected from different satellites? And what if students could then share their science and engage the public using deeply visual storytelling?

Van Den Hoek is poised to bring that capability to Oregon State University. He and colleagues are spearheading the newly launched GAZE facility (Geospatial Analysis and VisualiZation for Education), a state-of-the art learning space that will allow students to explore a wide range of dynamic geographic processes and datasets.

At the heart of GAZE is a 12 ft. by 7 ft. hyperwall, an immersive 3×3 grid of computer monitors backed by a distributed infrastructure that is capable of handling large datasets. Coupled to the hyperwall is an augmented reality sandbox, which allows students to create and manipulate terrain models by moving sand into hills or valleys (see “Augmented Reality Sand Table” at the end of this story). Students will not only get to explore existing digital maps of, say, forest cover over the last decade in the Pacific Northwest, but develop their own programming scripts to create original visualizations of environmental or social changes.

“We want to get to a point where students are asking new questions that haven’t been asked before,” says Van Den Hoek, whose own research includes using satellites to understand landscape impacts stemming from armed conflict. “Students will be able to dynamically manipulate climate models and really go face-to-face with the complexity of a Cascadia subduction zone earthquake, oxygen deficits in the coastal ocean or mining effects on the local environment.”

GAZE is just one example of the innovative facilities in CEOAS that are challenging the status quo of learning about our changing planet and population. Collaborative spaces and robust computing offer opportunities for students to learn in a way they never could before — in step with planetary changes while exploring their own research questions, diving into big datasets and learning the programming languages of the pros. Together with a cluster of new hires that are breaking down disciplinary walls, students will have access to both the talent and tools to discover an unseen Earth.

Always on, Always Connected

Geospatial facilities like GAZE owe their success to the microprocessor revolution. The miniaturization of devices has brought powerful computers into the palm of our hands, when they used to take up giant rooms. These technologies are also faster, cheaper and able to satisfy our “always-on, always-connected environment,” says Chuck Sears, head of Research Computing at CEOAS.

Likewise, in the scientific world, instruments are always on and connected, collecting vast amounts of data. In many cases, instruments are able to share and send data on demand. The velocity at which this occurs has surged in the last 30 to 40 years.

The end result? Emerging technologies that once were the sole province of big business have enabled the geospatial sciences to cover enormous ground, from cameras mounted on balloons more than a hundred years ago, to today’s satellites that allow us to visualize and map at scales far beyond our natural abilities.

The enormity and complexity of data have driven researchers to rethink how they teach geospatial concepts. Instead of a professor serving as the knowledge authority, educators have enlisted the help of students to explore the data and search out new patterns — a new kind of all-hands-on-deck approach to data mining.

“Today what we are seeing is an incredible desire from the students to be active participants and push the envelope,” Sears says. “Getting these types of facilities and technologies into the hands of eager students is essential, because they are the ones who will build the next generation of tools and contribute to the workforce and society.”

Anne Nolin agrees. As a geography professor in CEOAS, she has been using remote sensing techniques since the mid-1980s while witnessing the evolution of geospatial instruction and learning.

“GPS satellites have changed the world. They help us navigate through space, whether driving through Portland or playing Pokémon Go,” she says. “We want students engaged with this completely visual, big data, digital world. That’s where we are, and why we don’t want to rely on these traditional ways of teaching.”

GAZE allows Jamon Van Den Hoek and his students to explore data generated by satellites in near real time. (Photo: Dave Reinert)

Behind the curtain

In addition to novel facilities and advances in microprocessors, software access has become fluid. As a result, students can do their work from almost anywhere.

Karen Shell’s Climate Modeling class has been taking advantage. Two 60-inch, high-definition screens project a NASA climate model showing phytoplankton growth across the globe, a mass of hazy green swirling like smoke. Students huddle around computer workstations and discuss climate model datasets and Python codes. Each has been working with geospatial data to develop his or her own numerical model and unearth a facet of the climate system — where will the ocean warm the most in the next decade? The next century? And what will happen to biomass growth in a warming world? Their computers show possible answers to those questions in the form of graphs, histograms and other visualized data.

What is not visible is the application that enables this kind of experiential learning. Behind the scenes, an open-source, web-based interface called Jupyter Notebook provides a platform for students to share Python scripts and code collaboratively. And soon, students will be hitching up to Jupyter through a local server, allowing them to access their codes and model runs from any computer. Where they once had to install specialized software, work from a lab or log in remotely, students will be able to easily share methodologies or compare results.

“With the new system, students will be able to use a web browser from any computer to get access to all the software they need,” says Shell, an atmospheric scientist at CEOAS. “By reducing this barrier, we can spend more time on the fun stuff of climate modeling and data analysis.”

Briana Phillips, a graduate student in atmospheric sciences and a NASA Earth and Space Science Fellow, has been applying concepts in Shell’s course to study the Lorenz Attractor. Otherwise known as the butterfly effect, the Lorenz Attractor demonstrates that a small change in initial conditions can cause a very different outcome. In the context of weather prediction models, it explains why it is difficult to predict the weather much more than a week out.

Phillips says the Jupyter Notebook, together with the small class size, made it easier to collaborate.

“This class has been my most challenging, but it’s also the class where I’ve learned the most. We do a lecture, then a lab. We can ask questions, help each other, share ideas. It’s an atmosphere really conducive to learning,” she says.

Undergraduate student Matt Laffin explored what would happen to the Earth’s habitable zone if our day was cut in half. Would the Earth freeze over? Could we still live in certain places, and for how long? It might seem sci-fi, but his project provides insight into whether a newly discovered planet — with a different size, orbit or atmospheric composition — could support life.

The what-if nature of Shell’s class is compelling evidence that teaching geospatial sciences has moved from inference-driven to inquiry-driven. Boundaries between professor and pupil, between disciplines, between the haves and have-nots of software access are gone. Like the static map in Jamon Van Den Hoek’s office, traditional ways of looking at our planet from a distance have been redrawn.

What is left? Only the most unimagined map of the world, one that holds a story yet to be told.

Mark Farley with Oregon Sea Grant shows off the Visitor Center’s Augmented Reality (AR) sand
table at the Hatfield Marine Science Center. The cyberlab research platform is not only fun to play with; it provides a means of teaching complex concepts, in this case, map topography. Visitors can play with the sand to create hills and valleys, and the AR component projects colors corresponding to the resulting land and water elevations, along with topographic contour lines (Photo by Lynn Ketchum).

Editor’s note: Abby Metzger is a communicator with the Oregon State University College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences.

The post Classroom in View appeared first on Terra Magazine.

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

New edition of Confluence now available

Breaking Waves - Tue, 10/11/2016 - 11:50am

The fall/winter 2016 edition of Oregon Sea Grant’s semiannual newsletter, Confluence, is now available online. Articles you’ll find in this issue:

  • Guidelines help boaters enjoy watching whales without disturbing them;
  • University of Oregon study reveals why hypoxia hasn’t affected Coos Bay;
  • Simulator helps coastal residents prepare tsunami evacuation strategy;
  • Students get their feet wet in watershed science with StreamWebs;
  • Oregon Sea Grant helps prepare coastal kids for high-tech jobs; and
  • When human health affects environmental health.

You can download a free PDF here.

The post New edition of Confluence now available appeared first on Breaking Waves.

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Shrubs for wildlife – Vine maple

Tree Topics - Mon, 10/03/2016 - 2:53pm

By Amy Grotta, OSU Forestry & Natural Resources Extension – Columbia, Washington & Yamhill Counties

Happy fall!

For the fourth installment in our series on native shrubs that are beneficial to wildlife, I’ve chosen one that appropriate to the season, provides some nice fall color to our forests.  Now I’ve met more than a few woodland owners who are not fans of vine maple; it’s not a favorite of those who prefer a tidy or parklike forest. Working or wandering in mature forests you’ve probably tripped over it or crawled under it and possibly cursed it under your breath.  Nevertheless, vine maple is another of those “brush” species that benefits wildlife in numerous ways. With some tolerance for its rambling ways you can find a place for this species to provide that service on your woodland in concert with your other land management goals.  If you are interested in enhancing wildlife habitat on your property, read on for our species profile.

Species name: Vine maple (Acer circinatum)

Two photos taken on the same day and site in late September. Top, on the edge of a patch cut, with colorful foliage and abundant seeds. Bottom, in adjacent mature stand with green foliage and few seeds.

Description: A large, multi-stemmed large shrub or small tree. Like all maples, leaves are lobed like a fan or the palm of your hand (“palmate”) and in opposite arrangement on the branch; seeds are in winged pairs (“samaras”).  The bark is smooth and greenish.  Vine maple grows on moist sites in sun or shade, in regenerating to mature forests.  In sun, its habit is denser and erect; seed production is more abundant, and leaves turn orange to red in fall.  In a shady understory, it lives up to its name, with long spindly stems that arch to the ground and re-root upon contact.  Fall foliage is less brilliant in the shade, and fewer seeds are produced.

Wildlife value: Vine maple is considered a preferred and nutritious summer forage for deer and elk. Elk continue to browse the twigs and buds in winter. Squirrels will cache the seeds for winter feeding. In open regenerating (i.e. early seral) areas, songbirds rely on deciduous shrubs such as vine maple for nesting cover and will forage for insects that feed on the foliage.

Management considerations:  Vine maple is considered a “good shrub to leave behind”, or carry over from one timber rotation to the next to support early seral associated songbirds.  Doing so, acknowledge that you’ll have to grant it a little real estate as it won’t play too well with little neighboring conifer seedlings.  You don’t need a lot to make a difference. Leaving vine maple along the edges of patch cuts or in clumps with other retained shrubs reduces interference with planted trees. In mature stands, vine maple will fill in the understory after thinning or disturbances allow light to filter through the canopy, providing a food resource and cover for deer and elk.


Jensen, E. 2013. Shrubs to Know in Pacific Northwest Forests

Uchytil, R. 1989.  Acer circinatum.

Oregon Forest Resources Institute. 2015. Wildlife in Managed Forests: Early Seral-Associated Songbirds

Woodland Fish & Wildlife. 2014. Managing for Deer and Elk on Small Woodlands.


The post Shrubs for wildlife – Vine maple appeared first on TreeTopics.

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

New Sea Grant videos demonstrate how to use StreamWebs kits

Breaking Waves - Fri, 09/30/2016 - 8:56am

Two new videos from Oregon Sea Grant demonstrate how to collect and identify aquatic insects and test water quality using kits available from StreamWebs.

One of the videos, How to use StreamWebs’ macroinvertebrate kit, shows educators how to teach students to collect and identify aquatic insects using the macroinvertebrate kit and data sheets. The other, How to use StreamWebs’ LaMotte water quality kit, shows how to teach students to test water quality using a kit with equipment made by LaMotte.

The kits are among several that educators can borrow from StreamWebs, a program administered by Oregon Sea Grant. StreamWebs provides educators with field equipment, data sheets, lesson plans and training so they can teach students how to collect data about the health of waterways. It also provides an online database where students can enter and analyze the information they gathered.

Both videos were produced by Oregon Sea Grant’s Renee O’Neill and Vanessa Cholewczynski and shot and edited by Cholewczynski. Special thanks to Angela Clegg with the South Santiam Watershed Council; students from Foster Elementary School in Sweet Home, Oregon; Grayson Johnston; and Zethan Brandenburger.

The post New Sea Grant videos demonstrate how to use StreamWebs kits appeared first on Breaking Waves.

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

What to do about those drought-damaged trees?

Tree Topics - Wed, 09/07/2016 - 1:35pm

By Amy Grotta and Brad Withrow-Robinson, OSU Forestry & Natural Resources Extension

Group mortality of Douglas-fir in May 2015. Douglas-fir beetle was found in all these trees. Photo Kara Shaw

We have certainly experienced some significant drought conditions lately.  Stressed and dying trees are showing up all around the Willamette Valley, with concern that this could lead to beetle outbreaks and still more trees killed.  Is it time to throw in the towel, cut your losses (so to speak) and just salvage everything that is looking poorly?  Maybe, maybe not.  The decision needs to be considered carefully, weighing individual sites and stand conditions along with your objectives for your property.  Anybody considering a salvage harvest needs to look before they leap.

As we’ve discussed several times over the past few years, 2013-2015 were hard drought years and we continue to see the cumulative effects on our trees. Many trees, conifers in particular, have dead tops or have died outright.  Since drought symptoms typically take a season or two to be expressed, what showed up this year is a result of damage from 2015.  So far 2016 is proving to be a more normal year, though it remains to be seen how the fall and winter will play out.  If we continue to get decent rainfall then we should start to see new damage taper off, but it’s too early to tell.

Beetles are a concern and both Extension and ODF have been getting plenty of calls about this.   Yes, bark beetles have been more active in the Valley this year in drought-stressed stands.  We expect this since beetles make their living off of dying trees, and are often seen more as a symptom than a cause of problems.  Having drought stressed trees does not automatically mean bark beetles will come find them.  And there are several types of bark beetles, some more damaging than others.

Reddish frass in bark crevices is a sign of Douglas-fir beetle. Photo: B. Withrow-Robinson

That said, if you have trees that suffered partial damage a year or two ago, and then died completely this year, it is worth taking a closer look on these and surrounding live trees for signs and symptoms of bark beetles such as pitch streams, frass, and fading crowns on live trees. Fact sheets from the Oregon Department of Forestry on the Douglas-fir beetle and the fir engraver will help you.  If you see something of concern you can contact the ODF Forest Health experts or your OSU Extension Agent for help (for backyard trees, call a certified arborist).  Where there are significant numbers of beetles, landowners will be looking to sanitize their stands by removing infested trees before new adults emerge next spring.

This is where you want to exercise caution and be wary of door knockers.

Regrettably there is a history of shady operators approaching landowners telling them one story or another about their trees dying or markets disappearing and encouraging them to harvest trees “before it is too late”.  It is invariably tied to an offer to take care of the problem for them.  Unfortunately, the landscape is littered with stories of folks who have accepted those offers and sold off some timber they had not otherwise intended to sell, often for much less than it was worth.

We are aware of a number of small woodland owners in the Valley having received unsolicited offers to buy their timber as a way to mitigate drought damage. The “buyers” warn of all the trees damaged by drought being killed by beetles and being lost unless harvested, and encouraging people to sell and get some value before everything dies.

Unsolicited offers to buy timber are nothing new to small woodland owners, and we always advise to be wary of them.  But this seems like a time to be particularly cautious.

An unsolicited buyer offering to assess the health of your trees for you is a clear conflict of interest and a definite red flag.  One outcome could be the buyer exaggerating the potential for future loss, thereby convincing you to sell healthy trees you had no intention to log or to accept a lower price for the timber than you’d like (claiming that it’s “better than nothing”).  Have a third party help you evaluate damage and if you think you want to proceed with salvage or sanitation harvest, move ahead as recommended with any harvest and seek bids from different operators.

You should realize that nobody knows the fate of these trees with any certainty.  Drought conditions may be winding down, or may stick around for a while yet.   Both choices – wait and see or do some preemptive salvage – involve risks that you need weigh.  Don’t be driven by speculative claims about the trees dying, and do not panic.  One or two beetle-killed trees in a stand is not an uncommon event and not a certain epidemic in the making.  The decision to salvage needs to be well-timed and well-planned.  Starting the job and then not finishing before beetles emerge in spring, or not properly dealing with slash, can make matters worse instead of better.  Applying pheromone caps is another option to protect healthy trees if beetle-infested material cannot be removed in a timely manner.

So, suppose that you’ve done your homework and decide that salvaging drought-damaged or insect-damaged trees is in your best interest and meets your property objectives.  You still have some due diligence to take care of.  Get bids and ask the logger for references, go see his past jobs and talk with people who worked with him.  Contact ODF to find out if there are any past violations, or the Association of Oregon Loggers for information on their credentials.  Finally, insist on a written contract.  Consult these publications for more guidance: Small Scale Harvesting for Woodland Owners and Contracts for Woodland Owners.

A final note, landowners in Linn, Benton and Lane Counties can sign up receive Emergency Forest Restoration Funds to remove drought-killed trees through the Farm Services Agency.  More info here (scroll down).  Folks in the northern Valley counties can get in touch with their local FSA to check on the availability of funds.

The post What to do about those drought-damaged trees? appeared first on TreeTopics.

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Food Science Camp 2013 and Erik Fooladi

Bringing Food Chemistry to Life - Fri, 07/19/2013 - 12:44pm

We participate in the Oregon State U Food Science Camp for middle school students.

Part of the STEM [science technology engineering math] Academies@OSU Camps.

We teach about bread fermentations, yeast converting sugars to CO2 and ethanol, lactobacillus converting sugar to lactic and acetic acids, how the gluten in wheat can form films to trap the gas and  allow the dough to rise. On the way we teach about flour composition, bread ingredients and their chemical functionalities, hydration, the relationships between enzymes and substrates [amylases on starch to produce maltose for the fermentation organisms]; gluten development, the gas laws and CO2′s declining solubility in the aqueous phase during baking which expands the gas bubbles and leads to the oven spring at the beginning of baking; and the effect of pH on Maillard browning using soft pretzels that they get to shape themselves..

All this is illustrated by hands on [in] activities: they experience the hydration and the increasing cohesiveness of the dough as they mix it with their own hands, they see their own hand mixed dough taken through to well-risen bread. They get to experience dough/gluten development in a different context with the pasta extruder, and more and more.

A great way to introduce kids to the relevance of science to their day to day lives: in our case chemistry physics biochemistry and biology in cereal food processing.

We were also fortunate to have Erik Fooladi from Volda University College in Norway to observe the fun: http://www.fooducation.org/

If you have not read his blog and you like what we do here: you should!


endless pasta


Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

Good Cheese, Bad Cheese

Bringing Food Chemistry to Life - Wed, 07/10/2013 - 12:25pm

pH, colloidal calcium phosphate, aging, proteolysis, emulsification or its loss and their interactions lead to optimum melting qualities for cheeses. A module in this year’s food systems chemistry class.

This module was informed by this beautiful article “The beauty of milk at high magnification“ by Miloslav Kalab, which is available on the Royal Microscopical Society website.


Of course accompanied by real sourdough wholegrain bread baked in out own research bakery.

Inspired by…

“The Science of a Grilled Cheese Sandwich.”

by: Jennifer Kimmel

in: The Kitchen as Laboratory: Reflections on the Science of Food and Cooking

Edited by Cesar Vega, Job Ubbink, and Erik van der Linden


Categories: OSU Extension Blogs

February 2011- Nutrition Education Volunteers taking “vacation”

Family Food Educators of Central Oregon - Tue, 02/01/2011 - 8:24am

I’m back from maternity leave and getting resettled into some new responsibilities.  We had a staff member leave us, so Glenda and I are having to pick up the work load until we find someone new, or our responsibilites change.  Being a new mom is lots of work too, so I’ve gone part time (24 hours aweek) but am still trying to get everything done… that being said, we’ve decided to put our nutrition education volunteering on hold, until I have a managable workload.

We look forward to being able to start things back up in the summer or fall of 2011.  Thanks so much and since a few of you have been asking, here’s a photo of our boy.  He is 5 months old today!

Bundled out in the cold!

Categories: OSU Extension Blogs