Austin College’s Roo Bound program kicked off the new year Saturday with a well-attended lesson in culinary science.

Austin College’s Roo Bound program kicked off the new year Saturday with a well-attended lesson in culinary science.

Forty-three children attended Saturday’s program — about twice as many participants as usual, said volunteer and Austin College student Kayla Farrar.

The purpose of Roo Bound is to engage children in educational activities in an effort to encourage them to pursue higher education. Each month, a different AC department heads up the lesson.

On Saturday, Dr. John Richardson, an AC chemistry professor, led the children in a culinary science lesson. The attendees stretched mozzarella cheese and made gummy bears and yogurt balls, all while learning about the chemical changes and proteins involved in cooking.

“We did experiments, and we made this gooey stuff, and we were playing with cheese,” participant Leslie Quintanilla, 13, recounted excitedly.

According to volunteer and Austin College student Jamie Willoughby, the children seemed “pumped up” about the activity.

“(The hands-on activities) helped them understand what was really going on, besides just us getting them in a room and lecturing to them,” Farrar said.

Seven-year-old Mackenzie Duncan said she had fun at the program, but did not have her cheese, gummy bear or yogurt creations to show. She ate them, she said.

AC has one Roo Bound program planned each month through May. Farrar said she is looking into having the art department lead an activity in one of the upcoming months.