3 Reasons Why I Love Cooking Club
By Kassandra Johnston | HealthCorps Coordinator 2017 – 2019
I am the Coordinator at Chickasha High School. There are about 700+ students total. My favorite part about being a Coordinator is leading Cooking Club. It’s my 2nd year, and I have met three great staff members that are now helping me on a regular basis. I have about 15 students that come to each meeting, and most of them are freshman. Although some people may cringe at the thought of having mostly freshman in the class, this is probably the best part about it because they tend to be more willing to try new things.
First and foremost, cooking together gives students a time to share, bond, and work together. They are in small groups of 4-5 students which gives them the opportunity to talk with one another and get to know each other’s interests. Since they are cooking, no phones are allowed. They are also able to make mistakes (i.e. burning the rice) and learn from them together.
The students then learn “soft skills” like problem solving, responsibility, independence, social skills, and creativity. Sometimes we supplement or “takeaway” an ingredient and the students have to figure out how to still cook the recipe. The students make an effort to communicate and collaborate to make the best dish. There have been several meetings where the students get the same recipes, the same ingredients, and the dishes taste completely different!
The students learn how to cook for their families and how to budget. They also learn how to follow instructions and think about how to incorporate all of the food groups. Many of the students get really excited when they learn how to make a dish from a different culture so that they can make it at home for their families.
Overall, cooking club has grown to be a place of belonging, caring for one another, and teamwork. I hope that the skills like communication, teamwork, and independence, the students learn in cooking club will carryover to other areas in their life; not just when they cook.