September 12, 2016

Sigler Chefs!

By Stacey Nichols, Sigler Elementary, Plano ISD

Sigler Chefs is an after school cooking club. Our school decided to offer the class to 3rd grade students. Each teacher chose 4 students from her class and asked the child if they wanted to participate. (Permission slips were signed, of course!) We had 16 students in the class this spring. We prepared healthy snacks in the school lounge. We focused on fruit, vegetables, whole grains and proteins. What do our students learn during cooking class? Sequencing, following directions, math skills (fractions, doubling recipes), reading, how to make healthier choices, and independence! Cooking projects give students a boost in confidence and exposure to new and or healthy foods and often provides the motivation needed to continue these new habits at home.

Our recipes required measuring, mixing and using a variety of kitchen utensils. An adult was available to supervise the use of the microwave when needed, but most of our recipes were the “no-bake” kind. Before each class, students wash their hands and then we discussed the recipe and the healthy ingredients. The ingredients were placed on a long counter and students would take turns measuring out the ingredients and putting them on a plate or bowl. They would return to the table to finish the dish. We had 2 adults for the class and each guided the student through the recipe. The students loved being in the class and have asked to bring the recipes home to their families. We are currently making a cookbook for all the students and 3rd grade teachers including all recipes and pictures. We did have to have alternate ingredients for one student that had food allergies- so that is something to be aware of.

We will offer the class again in the fall. It was such a popular class that every grade level has asked to join in- but we think that we need to keep it small between 16-20 students. One of our most favorite recipes is below.

Protein Energy Bites

  • Bowl & spoon
  • ⅔ cup low- fat creamy peanut butter
  • ½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (optional)
  • 1 cup old fashioned oats
  • ½ cup ground flax seeds
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • ½ cup coconut flakes

Combine all 5 ingredients in a medium bowl. Stir to combine. Place in the refrigerator for 15-30 minutes so they are easier to roll. Roll into 12 bites and store in the fridge for up to a week.

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