Middle School students learn to cook with math

Published 7:12 pm Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Math class isn’t anything like it used to be; at least not in Tabitha Spooner’s 7th grade class at Bainbridge Middle School.

What began as an early morning meeting with students to help them with their math five months ago has generated into a Cookbook Committee.

The students bring in their favorite family recipes, which are then adjusted to more healthy versions. Spooner said it is a healthy eating project and a STEM activity for which the school received a $5000 Georgia Shape grant. It is an effort to teach more nutritious, healthy eating habits.

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The ultimate goal is to publish recipes in a cookbook next fall. Along the way students are learning math for sure, as they use conversion tables to measure ingredients. But they are learning so much more.

On Monday morning this week the class met at CRAVE Eatery where they participated in preparation of a salad, an entrée and a dessert, all from some of the recipes chosen for the book.

Under the direction of CRAVE owner Lori Shiver and head cook Tina Harris, the students learned the importance of cleanliness in food preparation. Those who assisted washed their hands and put on gloves before they began working with the ingredients. They were also given tips on how to serve meals in courses, stressing the importance of presentation, or how to make food more attractive.

The first course prepared was a delicious apple salad with whole wheat cinnamon bread sticks on the side. The entrée was a tasty cupcake cheeseburger. Ground beef, catsup, mustard and shredded cheese were combined and placed over a junior biscuit and baked in a muffin pan.

The dessert of a chocolate chip, cream cheese cookie made with gluten free oat flour topped off the healthy brunch that was greatly enjoyed by the students.

In between courses the students participated in math conversion projects. The first students to get the right answers were able to choose from a selection of kitchen aid door prizes.