The voice of the student body

The Dial

The voice of the student body

The Dial

The voice of the student body

The Dial

Life Hacks: Peer Advisory

Many students added extra chocolate chips to their cookies to make them super sweet. They were able to make the cookies using different substitutes like flax seeds for egg.

For years, the peer advisory class has been salient in guiding ninth graders into the new world of high school. This year, the new unit, Life Hacks, has been added to the curriculum.

Unlike some schools, Hackley does not offer a Home Economics course, so adding this unit allows students to learn a variety of essential basics when it comes to everyday life.

One of the biggest elements of a Home Economics class is the cooking and baking component. Although it may seem easy to most, cooking is a skill that takes precision and time. It’s a skill that is essential to living on your own or even just to have when you’re hungry and need a good meal. One of the first foods that the students learned to cook was a simple pasta with pesto, where they learned how to work around a stove and how to safely cut vegetables. With four pots on the stove, it was a bit crowded, but with time and effort they were able to dish up the herbed pasta and at the very least have it be edible.

“Cooking was definitely my favorite out of all the skills. I think that it was nice to do something fun as a class, but also have a refresher on how to do some basic tasks,” said freshman Cora McMahon.

In addition to cooking, the ninth graders learned how to bake oatmeal chocolate chip cookies with a healthy twist. In the Hackley kitchen, they learned how to measure ingredients, follow instructions for a recipe, and even substitute important ingredients like eggs if you don’t have any or are allergic. While there were a few mixups like putting in the chocolate chips before mixing the wet and dry ingredients, the cookies came out great and both the peer advisors and 9th graders had a great time baking together. This important life skill helped them to learn about communication in a kitchen, and what you can accomplish with a little creativity and the use of just a few ingredients.

“I think that there was definitely a small struggle when we were baking. Many people didn’t know how to properly mix things or use the oven, so it was great that we got to learn about these things more,” said freshman Morgan Begley.

Lastly, two important skills that students learned were how to do laundry and how to sew a simple stitch. For laundry, the students visited the athletics closet where two huge washers and dryers are located. There, they learned how to properly dry clothing and the use of different detergents on fabrics. This was especially helpful for juniors who are soon going to college since they will most likely have to buy their own detergent and wash their clothes there. One of the most surprising things that came from the class was when Ms. Williams taught the class how to properly fold a fitted sheet. Unlike many who simply fold the sheet into one jumbled-up ball, Ms. Williams gave a “corner technique” that shows how to neatly fold a fitted sheet. This life hack was very educational and taught many about what and what not to do when doing your laundry.

The most challenging skill to learn out of all of them was the sewing part. Many of the 9th and 11th graders didn’t really know how to do this skill at all, and it took the most time to learn. Director of Information Technology Jed Dioguardi taught the class and showed everyone how to do a simple running stitch. He even taught the class some tricks to getting the thread through the needle and how to sew on a button. Although the skill is one that is not as used as the others, it is an important skill nonetheless and is always helpful to have.

Mr. Dioguardi also talked about the importance of having your own unique signature, and let the class practice their own a few times. With many students getting their driver’s permits soon, it is useful to have a signature for these important objects.

“I’m really glad that we got to do this unit in peer advisory. Learning all of these skills has been super fun and it’s definitely something that I think all of us benefited from,” freshman Brandon Acosta said.

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