By: Carmen Willings
Updated June 9, 2019
Learning skills in the area of food preparation will help the students to become the most contributing members of their homes. It is also a great way to learn responsibility! Sorting, matching, reading labels, measuring, and many other skills can be naturally embedded in these experiences. Students should be taught from an early age to be involved in the food preparation process. Students can gather ingredients required for recipes. This will not only help the student learn to be more independent but will also help them to gain a better understanding of where food comes from and how it ends on their plate.
Observing how food changes and what is used to cause the change is a great concept and will help them understand solids, liquids, and gases. Cooking activities reinforce skills such as beginning math concepts, organization, fine motor, following directions, and early reading while having fun preparing tasty snacks.
Skills to Learn
Help the student develop skills in food preparation by teaching the student the following:
There are several methods that can be used to determine if a glass or container is at the right level:
Cutting, Dicing, and Peeling
Use a knife with an adjustable guide. Instruct the student to keep the fingers of the hand that is not holding the knife resting slightly curled on the item to be cut. To teach a student to peel, teach the student how to use a paring knife or vegetable peeler. Frequently rinsing the food being peeled can help the student identify areas that still need to be peeled.
If the student has useable vision, use color contrast and good lighting along with high contrast markings on measuring tools. It is helpful to use measuring cups that are the exact measurement so dry items can be leveled off. For tactile learners, label measuring cups and spoons with braille and/or tactile markings or place notches on the handle. Demonstrate how to measure ingredients over a larger container to catch spills.
Spreading Semi-Soft Solids
Teach the student to spread outward from the center and go in a systematic pattern: left to right and top to bottom.
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