If there’s one thing I learned during the three years of my childhood spent in Thailand, it was an appreciation for other cultures, traditions, and of course, food! And while my children don’t have the same opportunities to travel, I still wanted to give them that same cultural experience through homeschooling. For me, a big part of making that cultural to educational connection is Universal Yums.
Each month Universal Yums sends me a box featuring a different country that includes treats you’d normally only experience if you were traveling. Once I knew the country we’d be going to, it was easy to put together a geography lesson built around that country.
Our Homeschool Lesson
When I plan my lessons, I always try to build around a single theme. While the main focus was geography and learning about South Korea, I was also able to incorporate some reading, writing, and art into our lessons. We read some facts about the country, located it on a map, and then ended our learning experience by trying out our snacks from Universal Yums. And let me tell you: they gave us a real taste of the culture…literally!
I love that they included this booklet, which had some great information and described the snacks that we would be tasting. The trivia section gave the kids even more great facts about South Korea. Did you know everyone gets a year older on the same day? You don’t get facts like that in a geography book! Reading through all the trivia really sparked their curiosity about other cultures.
My favorite part of Universal Yums was the scorecard. One side had an informative illustrated map with fun landmarks like temples and themed amusement parks, while the other side included a tasting log. While my kids were already working on their own tasting journals, this was perfect for recording our initial impressions of each snack. My daughter was happy to keep track of it for us, and the chart made it super easy!
I really liked the great variety of snacks in our box. We received some savory noodle snacks, some cakes and cookies, and even some fruity peach gummies. I’m proud to say my kids enjoyed being adventurous and tasted everything! While there were some clear winners, one or two got a thumbs down (although, I liked everything!).
As we enjoyed our snacks, I read through the information from the booklet about each particular snack and the reason it was included; it really added to our overall experience and helped us understand the culture even better. So many of the foods were tied to traditions that we had never heard of, and it led to a natural transition of discussing the similarities and differences to our own culture.
While the kids drew pictures of their snacks in their tasting journals, I played a song from the custom playlist linked in the booklet, which really rounded out our learning. It was a great hands-on lesson for all our senses!
As a parent, I love that they send us so many types of snacks that we might not otherwise get to try. All the unique information was presented in such an engaging way that it provided the perfect starting point for developing a homeschool geography lesson. It was also easy to adapt to any age, which is great because my kids are all different ages!
My kids loved getting to try so many snacks! These treats were different from the foods they eat everyday, and I think they were surprised by how much they enjoyed them. Overall, this was a great learning experience for all of us and an ideal way to spend some time together, while learning about a new culture. I know my kiddos will be looking forward to next month’s Universal Yums box!