Photo Cookbooks and Life Skills
Cooking! Using Cooking to Teach Everything! Life Skills, Social Skills, Maths, Science, English and more!
(See my Cook Books page for Books and CD’s available)
Cooking is a daily activity for everyone. It is a wonderful activity to teach ALL ages and stages. Cooking is an activity families, schools, community groups – indeed anyone can do it – and it provides long term recreation and independent living skills.
Through cooking you can teach all curriculum areas below. By providing a structured programme with goals/learning outcomes you can develop a cooking programme that addresses the learning style and needs of the individual student. One child may use the programme to learn to read while another may use it to communicate, using visuals.
10 Ways to Use Cooking to Teach
Here are some examples of how cooking can be used to teach a wide range of skills at both school and home:
- Sequencing: Cut up recipes and get the child to put in the correct order.
- Writing: Write out recipe, record observations, etc.
- Reading: Read recipes, comprehension of instructions, etc.
- Social Skills: Turn taking, waiting for a turn, requesting help, request a taste, etc.
- Maths: Counting, fractions, volume.
- Motor Skills: Cutting, opening containers, stirring, etc.
- Sensory: Tasting, smelling, texture of ingredients.
- Conversation Skills: Talking about foods, likes and dislikes.
- Categories: Where items go in kitchen – fridge, pantry, etc.
- Hygiene: Hand washing, cleaning dishes, etc.
Cooking is a great way to develop communication for children who have limited verbal skills. Here are some examples how to provide opportunities to communicate:
- Give container with lid on too tight. Student needs to ask for help.
- Place hands in sticky ingredients and say “Yuck”.
- Count when stirring i.e. 1,2,3.
- When turning tap on/off, say ON/OFF. Wait for them to indicate they want it turned on – request, point, etc.
- Count wherever possible… pikelets in pan, honey joys, etc.
- Look through photo recipe book with student. Discuss things they like and don’t like.
- Sing songs when cooking (“Everybody mixing” etc.)
- Give bowl to mix without spoon. Student needs to ask for spoon.
- Give fry-pan with no cord. Student needs to ask for HELP.
- Wherever possible don’t anticipate their communication. Wait for them to communicate first rather than guessing their needs (e.g. Hands dirty, want to wash, wait for them to look at you, and indicate want of help, etc.)
For more ideas on how to develop communication skills see Practical Communication Programmes by Jo Adkins and Sue Larkey.
Download a FREE recipe in the tip sheet section on this website.
What is in it for me?
- 340 photos of the key stages of each recipe (ingredients, utensils, equipment and recipe).
- PROVEN recipes that kids love.
- 50 full colour pages – full colour, step by step recipes.
- Easy activities to incorporate into school day/home.
- DURABLE: Spiral bind, gloss art paper.
- Over 300 skills to teach – from communication, maths, science, social skills and more (ALL Curriculum Areas).
- Outlines learning outcomes from cooking.
- 6 step programme from evaluations to implementation.
- Worksheets for follow up activities.
- Heaps of time-savers and ideas.
From the Cookbook Manual:
CURRICULUM GUIDELINES OUTCOMES FROM COOKING PROGRAMME
Together We Cook ‘n’ Learn
COMMUNICATION: EXPRESSIVE (Speaking) RECEPTIVE (Listening)
STUDIES OF SOCIETY & ENVIRONMENT
HEALTH & PHYSICAL EDUCATION
SELF HELP INDEPENDENT LIVING
PEOPLE & FOOD HYGIENE
VISUALS & Augmentative Communication Systems