Are you brave enough to try a cooking day with your Spanish students, but wondering where to start? Here are a few tips & hints I’ve learned along the way!
Cooking with students is a fun way to bring culture into the classroom!
I love cooking with my students during the foods unit. As a department of one, I had to learn some of these tips & hints the hard way (trial and error). I hope that by sharing these tips & hints with you, you can avoid some of the mistakes I made the first few times & just have fun on cooking day! Once you have one cooking adventure under your belt, each consecutive time runs much more smoothly.
1. Know your school’s rules.
Where can you cook?
What can you cook?
How will the supplies be paid for?
2. Choose a recipe (or recipes!).
3. Keep in mind the cooking time.
Are you on a block schedule? Or do you only have 45 minute classes? Do you meet with your students every day or every other day?
Keep in mind the cooking time as you prep with your recipe. You may be able to cook the entire recipe in one class period, or you may need to split it into two days – Prep Day and Cooking Day (for example).
4. Target Language Goals
I suggest teaching a lesson (or several) in the Target Language related to the recipe itself.
There are fun opportunities for TPRS here! Have students act out the steps of the recipe using props. Pretend they are contestants on Iron Chef. Have some fun, but most of all make sure students understand all of the recipe language before attempting the recipe itself.
5. Call in the reinforcements.
Consider asking for parent or community member volunteers on cooking day.
I have been able to coordinate with my school’s FACS department for cooking days. Because of the layout of the room (4 kitchens in one room), I can’t be everywhere at once to answer questions or give suggestions. Inviting a member of the community to come in and help on cooking day was a great way to give support to my students while sharing the language learning love with the community.
There you have it! My five best tips for cooking with your students!
Do you have any suggestions or lessons learned along the way? Please share your tips or stories with us below!