4 BIG Reasons that Students Should Cook in the Classroom

Guest post by Michelle Stern.

It’s hard to fathom asking a teacher to integrate even one more activity into their already overflowing curriculum. But what if it was something that could accomplish multiple learning objectives at the same time? On the surface, cooking is something that seems to be more suited to a home kitchen – when parents have the time, space, and the inclination to do a fun activity together with their children. In reality, though, it’s the perfect vehicle through which kids can practice math skills, learn new vocabulary, see science in action, and develop healthy habits to last a lifetime. By cooking in the classroom, students can learn math, language arts, science, and social studies. It’s the epitome of the common core.

• Students can SEE relative quantities and can learn about “more” and “less” through the manipulation and measurement of ingredients.
• They can experiment with what approach is suitable to solve a problem.
• They can practice division or multiplication by halving or doubling a recipe.

Language Arts:
• Reading and following recipes helps students to learn about sequencing, following directions, communicating with their peers and asking relevant questions.
• Plus, cooking has a language all it’s own – so little chefs can learn lots of new vocabulary in the process.

• Cooking is chemistry in action. Have you ever noticed that a raw egg is runny but then becomes solid when cooked? And what about shaking cream in a jar to make butter – how does that happen?
• Students can learn where their food comes from. Hint – it’s not from a grocery store!
• Of course, they can learn about healthy eating habits that will last their entire lives.

Social Studies:
• Cooking is an excellent opportunity for students to practice following the rules and being an overall good citizen.
• It’s a delicious way to explore the cultures of their peers! Sign me up!
• Learning about how food is grown is a fantastic introduction to business, economics, and the distribution of goods – in our own country and across the world.

Want to get The Kids Cook Monday started at your school? Check out our School Program!

About the author:

Michelle Stern is a former high school biology teacher and also founded and ran What’s Cooking with Kids, a popular certified green cooking school for children in the SF Bay Area. She is the author of The Whole Family Cookbook, and was invited to the White House to be a part of the launch of Michelle Obama’s Chef’s Move to Schools Program. With 16 years of combined teaching experience, Michelle is uniquely qualified to integrate cooking activities into curriculum that educators and homeschoolers are already doing. Her home on the web is whatscookingkids.net. You can also find her on Facebook and on Instagram.