Harvest Cooking: Surprisingly Easy Ways to Implement

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Harvest Cooking: Surprisingly Easy Ways to Implement

Fall is a wonderful time to implement cooking into your classroom.  Students in America look forward to Thanksgiving, but the fall harvest and abundance of food is always ready to enjoy.

I loved making soup with my students.  I used the story Stone Soup as a starting off point, to engage literature.    There are many versions of Stone Soup in our libraries, so find and compare them if you can.

Plus, talking about the Pilgrim's first Thanksgiving is easily integrated with this project. (A tie to your Social Studies curriculum.)

We would compile a list of vegetables/ ingredients we would like for the soup.  This was a list making activity for them.  

After the list is made, I would send it home with the students and ask each student to bring one vegetable in to share.   If time, send a letter asking what they can bring in in advance. Then make sure that you have a variety, not all potatoes.  There are usually some parents who wouldn't mind switching vegetables.

   When possible I asked for the fresh vegetable, but a can of peas, corn, or beans, is just as good.

Remember to include seasonings, such as salt and pepper. 

Before cooking:

 Integrate math with this lesson by graphing the vegetables that were brought in.  It could be an object graph with the actual vegetables, or a picture graph of the vegetable.  Students would place their canned vegetables in the graph along with the fresh vegetables.

Following graphing, you can add the science skill of sink and float.  Have the students predict whether the vegetable would sink of float, as you place it in a tub/container of clear water.  

Remember, cooking is a science lesson.  They will see the chemical changes of hard potatoes becoming a soft potato ready to eat.  They can observe steam rising from the broth as it is cooked.  

Have them make pictures of various ways the vegetable changes in appearance as it cooks.  

Cooking with students is easy, but it needs to be planned.  You must make sure tables are covered with paper or plastic, to help clean up after creating their product.

When cutting a vegetable you have to make sure that the students are safe.  

 With potatoes, I would peel the potato while they watched.  Then I would slice the potato in quarters.  Each small group could then cut their  piece into smaller pieces. I would have them cut it with plastic serrated knives.  Carrots can be done the same way.


I would provide a soup broth in a large pot.  (If you want to add a clean stone, that is always an option.)  Students will place their vegetables into the pot.

Depending on time, and your school, you could:

  •  cook the soup at home and bring it in the next day.
  • cook it in the cafeteria, if the cafeteria manager allows it.
  • cook it in the classroom on a hot plate.

Warning:  if you have food allergies in your room, make sure that those foods are not included in the mix.

Children who don't like

 vegetables are often willing 

to try the soup, because 

they made it.

Make sure you have bowls, spoons, napkins, and cups of water for the soup tasting. 

Add a festive table cloth and have the students make their own place mats for the soup tasting day.


Then sit back and enjoy the 
soup and their comments.  It will be a fun experience for everyone.


PS.  You can also include other food like fruit.  Homemade butter to put on a roll is another great activity.

Be as creative as you like!😁

Mickey

by Michele Strayer

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