This New York Times op-ed makes a case for bringing back the cooking class in public schools. The author, Helen Zoe Veit, writes about her first experience cooking in school: "It was the first time I had ever really cooked anything. I remember that it was fun, and with an instructor standing by, it wasn’t hard. Those were deeply empowering lessons, ones that stuck with me when I first started cooking for myself in earnest after college." Read more: Time to Revive Home Ec (NYTimes.com)
 


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I applaud The Cooking Room's efforts and hope this can be expanded nationwide. Public schools need to consider resuscitating home economics courses, with a renewed focus on cooking lessons and nutrition education. Teaching basic cooking skills to children imparts them with lifelong skills needed to make smarter food choices. I was lucky enough to grow up with a chef as a father and develop a natural interest in cooking from an early age. Most children these days do not, despite the plethora of food media out there today. While learning at home may be the best, most effective way to develop a knowledge of cooking skills, most parents unfortunately do not have the time or means to cook meals themselves on a daily basis. Requiring schools to reinvigorate cooking lessons is the next best - and most feasible - way. Exposure to new foods and techniques will inspire interest in cooking from an early age and can be a way to enhance, rather than detract from, lessons in math, science, and social studies. Schools will be able to empower kids to make better, more informed food choices, in order to prevent obesity. Taxes on junk food and healthier school lunches are important steps, but how can you learn to eat healthier if do not even know to cook?

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