Thursday, November 14, 2013

Tasty Tuesday Returns (on a Thursday)

I promised the return of Tasty Tuesday, and we did have cooking class this week on Tuesday. Just getting around to posting about it now, though, since late nights of parent-teacher conferences the past two days meant I didn't even turn the computer on once I got home.

Our wonderful school nurse, Jill, went apple picking with her family last week. She is often in our room during our weekly cooking class, since she does a tube feeding for one of my students at the time we usually cook. She thought of us as she was apple picking, and brought us back a big bag of delicious apples! Thank you, Nurse Jill! We had to make something with apples, then...Apple Bread it was! (The recipe is from one of my fabulous classroom staff members, Lizzie, who is an incredible cook/baker!)

First, I want to share my new way of doing visual recipes for my students (and this is the format each Tasty Tuesday recipe will be in from now on) - they are so successful and more engaged with the visual recipes!

I have each step of the recipe printed on a strip of cardstock and laminated. Before we start, the students work together to put the steps in order numerically in our pocket chart.

Then, we need to get out our ingredients and tools (utensils, equipment, etc.). I have each ingredient and tool on strips, too. Students match each ingredient/tool to its strip so we know we have everything we need.

After we get everything set out on the table, I put each ingredient or tool strip behind the corresponding recipe step in the pocket chart.

Finally we're ready to begin cooking. Each student is responsible for one (or more, depending on how many) step of the recipe. When it's their turn, the student sets the recipe step strip on the table and places the ingredient and/or tool strips below it so they know exactly what needs to happen during their step. When one step is completed, we keep it out of the pocket chart so we know what we have left to do.

I'm loving this new way of doing visual recipes. We used to just have everything on one page - and that basically meant staff were reading and directing the entire thing. Now, staff do still read the recipe steps and ingredient names, because all of my students are non-readers. But, the students can do so much more and be so much more involved this way, because they begin to recognize the pictures for both the actions and the ingredients. It's much more engaging!

I forgot to take photos of our completed apple bread, or even photos during cooking (the above photos were taken in my own kitchen as I reenacted the process, haha). Conference week does that to me! But trust me, it was fun and delicious!

I decided to put our visual recipes on my TPT store, so if you'd like them, they're available! I also included a recipe review worksheet and a worksheet for students to recall ingredients that are and aren't in the recipe. If you want visual recipe for apple bread, check it out:


  1. I love this idea Kara! Especially putting the recipe in order. I've tried to do recipes as a class, but feel like there is too much down time for students while they are waiting for other students. Do you have any suggestions for that?

    1. Thanks, Brie! I do think our students are at different levels, cognitively and age-wise, so while for some of my lower-functioning students merely attending to what their classmates are doing is a goal (and therefore waiting is not down time). But, here are some things we do for the other kids to limit wait time/down time during cooking activities:

      -While each student is "in charge" of a certain step of the recipe, that only means they are essentially the point person - they are responsible for gathering the needed ingredients and figuring out exactly what needs to happen and directing classmates as appropriate.

      -Many steps have several components to them, so other students are also involved. A recipe step that may say "add ingredient x, y, and z and stir," automatically involves at the very least 3 students (to measure/add each ingredient). Any time we need to stir, mix well, etc...we pass the bowl around to each student to stir or mix, so we are sure things get mixed well and so everyone gets a chance at working on most steps of the recipe.

      -Higher functioning students can also be in charge of either cleaning up prior steps of the recipe or prepping future steps while lower functioning students are working on more simple aspects of the recipe.

      -When we measure, everyone is involved in checking the "point person's" work. For example, if someone has to add 4 tablespoons of an ingredient, we all count tablespoons out loud together.

      -Higher functioning students/readers could be in charge of reading the recipe text steps to non-readers.

      -Sensory is also a good way to involve everyone at various steps. As each ingredient is introduced, we look at it, we feel/touch it (if appropriate!) and especially smell it. My students have smelled cilantro, onion, cinnamon, nutmeg, etc...Many things they do not have much prior experience with. We use descriptive words to talk about what we feel, see and smell which is a nice way to get some literacy work in.

      Hope those notes help a bit! :)


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