In Ms. Estergaard’s Culinary Arts I class, high school students gain important culinary and nutrition skills for personal living as well as develop an awareness of the food industry. With over 135 students enrolled this semester, we recently stopped by her classroom to see one of the groups in action!
During our visit on January 4, students were on part two of a three-day lab which included making homemade butter, using the leftover buttermilk to prepare homemade biscuits, and then baking the biscuits.
These types of in-class labs provide hands-on learning opportunities that reinforce the principles of food selection, preparation, and serving as well as safety and sanitation. To prepare for each lab, students discuss as a group the steps they will take, record their plan, and identify the items needed. At the conclusion of each lab, students work together to clean their kitchens, wash dishes, sanitize counters, and sweep the floor. They work hard to leave the kitchens better than they found them so the next class has a clean space to begin.
In addition to learning about the fundamentals of cooking, students develop a number of other important life skills, such as collaboration, communication, problem-solving, time management, and responsibility. As this semester draws to a close, Estergaard says she has enjoyed seeing students get out of their comfort zones and grow throughout their time together.
“I have been able to witness all students gaining confidence in the kitchen and feeling excited about making different recipes. They definitely want to be involved and enjoy the hands-on activities,” said Estergaard.
Address 300 Garfield Street SW, Bondurant, IA 50035