Weekly Reader Connections

Teacher Guide: Lesson 18.5

The Weekly Reader Connections feature on Kids' Place Houghton Mifflin Math provides children with additional practice of the skills taught in the Curriculum Connection feature in their student books.

The “Corn for Dessert” activity suggests that corn was a basic food of the early Native Americans. Explain that the foods Native Americans ate long ago depended on where they lived. In many places, the soil and the weather were just right for growing corn. In places that were not good for growing corn, early Native Americans ate other kinds of food.

Ask children how they eat corn. Many will say that they eat it on the cob. Others will mention eating individual corn kernels. Explain that those kernels were cut off cobs so that they could be eaten by the forkful (or spoonful). Sometimes corn kernels are left to dry. Dry kernels can be ground up into tiny bits, or flour, that is used for baking.

Children answer questions based on the following recipe for “Indian Pudding,” which serves 4. If you have an oven available, you may wish to make this recipe with the class. Alternatively, you may copy and distribute it so that children can make the pudding at home with the help of a family member.


1 cup cornmeal
1 cup raisins
2 cups water
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup chopped nuts
2 tablespoons chopped apple

Preparation: (Preheat oven to 350°.)
  1. Mix the cornmeal and the raisins.
  2. Boil the water.
  3. Pour the cornmeal mixture into the boiling water. Stir over low heat for about 10 minutes until the mixture thickens.
  4. Mix all the other ingredients into the cornmeal mixture.
  5. Spread the mixture in a buttered 1-quart baking dish.
  6. Place the baking dish in a larger pan filled with 1 inch of water.
  7. Bake for about 1 hour.

Cool and serve with ice cream or whipped cream and berries.

Houghton Mifflin Math Grade 1