Promoting Food Literacy in Public Schools

By Dawnie July 6, 2011

Chef Zakary Pelaccio is thinking outside of the box and offering his skills and vision to make a change in elementary students lives.  NYC Public School system is embracing his boldness and direction in creating a great window of opportunity.

The Cooking Room – the first of its kind: an in-school, hands-on, dedicated cooking classroom where children learn about food and create delicious dishes based on tenets of good nutrition… while having fun.

Food knowledge, culinary skills, taste-coaching: The Cooking Room will help kids to make smart food choices.  The program’s goal is to promote food literacy to kindergarten through 5th grade students.  The Cooking Room operates through dedicated kitchen classrooms where teachers, professional chefs, and chef-instructors educate kids in grade-appropriate food-related lessons that incorporate science, math, reading, and nutrition.

Through classes in The Cooking Room, children is will learn about food, cooking and taste, while bolstering academic core-standards through the practical application of those skills in a fun, stand-alone kitchen classroom.
The Cooking Room curriculum will focus in on each grade level’s teaching, whether it’s reading comprehension, scientific observation or fractions.  Kids are learning in their regular classrooms while also introducing a whole new world of flavors and techniques.  The goal: teach kids how to work with real, healthy, raw ingredients to prepare tasty food and learn that there are palatable alternatives to processed junk food. 2011-2012 promises to be even a greater leap forward!