What is Cooking and Nutrition/Food Preparation and Nutrition about?
At Kingsmead School, the Food curriculum integrates links between life skills, health and nutrition forming bridges to industry understanding and experiences. It is designed to enable all students to form an understanding of food and allows for each individual to find an area of food that is of interest to them. The curriculum is sequenced to increase in depth and complexity over time so that all students can discover the impact of food and nutrition in everyday life in addition to specialist industry knowledge and skills. All students build on their prior experiences and understanding with a culmination of backgrounds coming together in the kitchens. The holistic approach of the food department enables all students to build cultural capital combining skills for a healthy life and experiences involving the hospitality and catering industry. All students at Kingsmead have opportunities to engage with the food department through its essential wider curriculum links connecting students to the importance of food via online resources as well as engagement with our local community as part of Drop Down Days. Our learners’ interests and curiosity guide their individual pathways through the curriculum and ensures all students develop skills to lead a balanced and healthy life beyond their school experience.
What do we teach in Cooking and Nutrition/Food Preparation and Nutrition and why?
Foods is an exciting and creative course which focuses on practical cooking skills to ensure students develop a thorough understanding of nutrition, food provenance and the working characteristics of food materials. It focuses on nurturing students' practical cookery skills and giving them a strong understanding of nutrition.
At KS3 students study Cooking and Nutrition for 19 weeks, rotating with Textiles for the remaining 19 weeks. They have one lesson a week and learn the theory and technical skills needed to make a product before completing the practical the following lesson. Students need to bring their own ingredients to cook with.
In Year 7, learners will develop basic understanding of nutrition and culinary skills based on the theme The Young Chef. These lessons are delivered through a series of focused practical tasks (cooking skills) focussing upon creativity, problem solving and independent learning skills. We begin by exploring the importance of Hygiene and safety for safe food production in the kitchen. This will prepare students to embark on developing their culinary skills beginning with identifying the names, parts and use of various equipment than the demonstration of knife skills. This will be developed and embedded through focused practical tasks. Next we investigate and develop our knowledge of the types of nutrients and their functions in the body. Students will also examine the nutritive value of different recipes using Explore Food software and create labels to give them an understanding of the traffic light nutritional labelling and how this information benefits them as consumers when shopping.
In Year 8, students will go on a journey to understand the influences on our food choice based on the theme Healthy Food Choices. We will explore how health conditions, religious, ethical, environmental and moral beliefs determine the foods that we eat. These lessons are delivered through a series of focused practical tasks (cooking skills) and theory lessons focussing upon the nutritional needs of coeliac, vegetarians, allergies and intolerances, food miles and the sustainability of food. This will prepare our students to understand how to plan meals for different individuals and embed in them an understanding of why people in their communities have specific diets. Students will apply their knowledge of different flours used to make savoury baked product and engage in practical experiment to extract gluten form them. Students will develop their understanding of raising agents and discover their functional and chemical properties when baking. Student will embark on a series of focussed practical to demonstrate their understanding of the sustainability of foods by using a range of ingredients that are available locally and also in season. From a nutritional perspective, students will build on prior learning of nutrients in Year 7 and explore their functions, sources, deficiencies and the impact of excessive intake. Students will apply their knowledge of nutrients by choosing commodities carefully when planning and preparing meals for themselves. Finally, we briefly explore what some ingredients do in recipes (functional properties).
At KS4 students follow the AQA GCSE Food Preparation and Nutrition Specification. The course is delivered through five core topics/skills. These skills are grouped into five core topics:
What does Cooking and Nutrition/Food Preparation and Nutrition enable our students to do?
Through studying Foods, students develop a range of technical skill while preparing a repertoire of dishes. At KS4 students cover specific skills, these include general practical skills; knife skills; preparing fruit and vegetables; use of the cooker; use of equipment; cooking methods; prepare, combine and shape; sauce making; tenderising and marinating; dough making; raising agents and setting mixtures. Knowledge and skills learnt at KS3 prepares students to take on the subject competently at KS4.
How is the curriculum structured in Cooking and Nutrition/Food Preparation and Nutrition?
Schemes of work encourage creativity and independence in practical work, and a thorough grounding in the technical skills needed to progress with cooking as a career or a life skill. Students learn about properties and functions of food and ingredients. This is combined with a knowledge of healthy eating and nutrients, and the importance of these in our diet, leading to lifelong knowledge of health and wellbeing. Students are encouraged to adapt recipes to suit their own tastes, which develops independence, organisation, planning, and creative thinking. Students are encouraged to develop healthy eating habits that can be sustained throughout their lives.
At KS3 students study Cooking and Nutrition for 19 weeks, rotating with Textiles for the remaining 19 weeks. They have one lesson a week and learn the theory and technical skills needed to make a product before completing the practical the following lesson.
At KS4 students have 3 lessons a week and study the theory of food in greater depth. They have a weekly practical that can run over 2 lessons in order for students to cook highly skilled and time-consuming products. They cover the exam specification in Y9, and complete 2 pieces of coursework in Y10, plus revision for the final exam. The first coursework is an investigation task into chemical and physical properties of a given food or ingredient. The second coursework consists of planning for a 3-hour practical exam, trialling dishes, evaluating nutrition and sensory profiles of individual dishes. Students are encouraged to be adventurous and creative. All practical work is recorded photographically for evidence and sent to the exam board.
What specifications do we follow?
GCSE: AQA 8585
What are the links between Cooking and Nutrition/Food Preparation and Nutrition and other subjects?
Food Preparation and Nutrition is explicitly linked to the English, Maths and Science however it also overlaps with many other curriculum areas such as:
What are the future careers students can take when they study Cooking and Nutrition/Food Preparation and Nutrition?
Upon completion Food Preparation and Nutrition, students will be qualified to go on to further study of a food related subject or embark on an apprenticeship or full-time career in the hospitality, catering or food industries. It is heavily science based and can link well with biology, chemistry and PE. It can help students progress to careers working in hotels, restaurants, tourist venues, catering and hospitality, environmental health, leisure and tourism, retail sales and customer service, as well as engineering and manufacturing.
There is a range of apprenticeships linked to the study of Food, such as butchery, baking, food technologist, chef, sous chef, pastry chef, food technologist, new product developer/tester.
What extra-curricular activities can students take part when you study Food Preparation and Nutrition?
The department have a very supportive ethos and students at KS3 and KS4 are encouraged to work in the department after school to catch-up on missed work. Exam revision classes are held regularly after school on Wednesdays from 3:30 -4:30 pm