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Teaching International Cuisine Through Holiday Traditions

By Adam Weiner, JD, CFSE

 

In this article, I am going to show you the easy way to teach about holiday events in different cultures.

I have long promoted shifting classroom teaching to the students, either individually or in groups, as much as possible. When students teach all or part of a class they first learn the material themselves. They develop their communication skills and work toward reducing shyness. They practice their public speaking. They also learn culinary management skills of planning, ordering ahead of time, time management, supervising others, etc. And, most importantly, they develop a new respect for how hard it is to teach. Students become much more attentive after a stint as a student teacher.

I frequently hand over my class at the holiday season to a student or students to teach about holiday foods of their culture. (Note, many students have multiple cultures in their families, and you should decide if they should present multi-cultures or to choose one.) You can make the assignment as easy or as complicated as your class time allows. If you don’t have much time, have the students teach a cookie recipe from their culture. If you have more time, you can have the students teach each other a holiday dessert (other than cookies), a side dish, soup, entrée, etc.

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