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Cooking Up English

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When you have an adult class with students from all over the world, this is a good opportunity to create a class cookbook, especially when you have been studying about food, shopping, going to a restaurant, etc. Ask students to bring cookbooks from home and you can bring some also. Discuss the categories which cookbooks are divided into: desserts, poultry, drinks, vegetables, etc. Ask the students to write out a favorite food or dish into a recipe. Ask whether the students want the recipe corrected for grammar or not. Students can also illustrate the recipes or directions (great for practicing sequence, too!). Assemble the recipes into the agreed upon categories, copy and staple together so that everyone gets a copy. It really gives the students ownership of this activity, helps to increase conversation about common subjects, and then we had a potluck at the end to celebrate the completion of the cookbook and to taste-test some of the recipes! This activity touched upon many things that I had not planned on, such as math (measurements), new food vocabulary words, lots of verbs (stirring, mixing, chopping, etc.), conversation about how families eat, raise their children, feed their families during holidays, and diet/nutrition. It also helped for students with diverse backgrounds to see the ways that people are alike and how important food is to all cultures. Many of the students bonded over discussions about how to cook a recipe, and tried out new recipes for their families.

K.To, Seattle, WA

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