Cook It Up
Learning to prepare food helps students build their self-esteem, confidence and sense of achievement, while developing valuable life skills. These are all benefits which will contribute to positive mental health. Earn this badge by giving students (and others) the chance to learn and practice the skills involved in preparing tasty, nutritious foods.
Ask students if they help in the kitchen at home and what tasks they help with. Ask them if they would like to learn and practice food preparation skills at school.
Find out if parents, teachers and students would like to increase their knowledge and skills in this area, and if you have a professional chef in your school that would be happy to give you suggestions, do a cooking demo or help run an after school cooking club. See if there is a need for more basic activities (e.g. learning how to use a knife properly) or more advanced skills (e.g. following recipes). Check out the Tools and Helpful Links for ideas!
Aim to use a variety of wholesome ingredients in your activities and choose local vegetables and fruit when possible. Use the Tips for Preparing Food at School and Kitchen Safety Tips (see Tools) to help you select food and keep everyone safe.
You don’t have to be a professional chef to teach students to prepare food. Just remember that they may have little kitchen experience, so explain things well and offer lots of encouragement. Choose at least one of the following activities/suggestions or come up with your own fun food preparation idea!