A tenant of western pedagogy is discovery based learning embedded into cross-curricular activities. We choose to create environments for children to “discover” their understanding. Research has shown that through strategic planning and guided instruction, students develop a deeper connection to learning when they go through this process rather than simply try to remember “facts”.
The cross-curricular aspect of learning is also important to learning in western education models. Rather than compartmentalize specific learning to specific subjects, we look to create learning moments that encompass a wide variety of disciplines. A good learning task will require students to engage in a wide variety of learning disciplines. Moreover, it also requires the students to take existing knowledge and apply it to solve real world problems or build connections to extensions of understanding.
Our amazing teacher, Ms. Jessica, has been conducting lessons using cooking as a vehicle to address learning objectives in Language Arts, Math, Science, Physical Education, and Social Studies. Here is a sample of a recent lesson where she had Kindergarten students making pancakes.
Teacher Jessica Leung
Grade level Kindergarten
Home Chefs Kindergarten: Let’s Cook Together
Since September, our class cooks and bakes each week. I introduce a recipe (usually linked to our inquiry or an important calendar holiday) on Monday, we write it out, discuss it and explore the ingredients using our different senses. Then on Friday its time to cook!
During this time of online teaching, we have continued with this routine. This time, we have become the home chefs, sharing recipes of our own with our class. At the beginning of the week, I send a video of myself and Dexter (our class pet dinosaur) cooking something yummy. Then, we can choose to follow along with her recipe, or we are invited to share a recipe of our own. We write out the recipe, and demonstrate our cookery skills in pictures or videos. It has been a wonderful experience sharing with our classmates, and exploring new tastes, new smells, new home dishes and new ways to cook!
Curricular Competencies Engaged
- Literacy – exploring different forms of writing; oral communication / explanation / expression
- Math – counting, basic concept of fractions; procedural language
- Physical Education – nutrition, food groups
- Social Studies – understanding of other cultures
- Science – changes of matter/state; cooking/chemical reactions; practicing observation skills; sensory exploration
- Arts – performance/presentation skills; drawing/illustrating with different mediums (to do recipe illustration
- ADST – using different forms of technology to document cooking/recipe; exploring how to modify (design) the recipe in a way to make it appealing to the consumer (even if it is for themselves)
Core Competencies Engaged?
- Communication – explain/recount and reflect connect and engage with others
- Personal/Social – valuing diversity; relationships and cultural context
- Thinking – develop and design