Every year, I undertake this cookbook project. We work at sequencing and retelling stories by talking about what came first, what happened next, and what happened last. Recipes are a great way to teach this.
First, I bake a recipe with the kids by following the ingredients and the directions. Then, we check out recipes in books and online to see how other recipes are written. Finally, each student begins the task of writing their own recipe. These are hilarious because their measurements are usually in "buckets" or "bottles" or even "squirts" and they often get baked for 2 minutes or as long as 1 day. Funny stuff. These recipes are collected into one half of our Christmas Cookbook.
The other half of the cookbook is a collection of tried and true family recipes. We talk in class about traditions and many of these traditions involve food. I ask families to submit a recipe with an explanation as to why it is special. The collection of these recipes is added to the back side of the cookbook and together it is a nice keepsake and a fun present for the families.
I take photos of each of the students in front of a Christmas tree and 1 side of the cookbook cover gets that photo and the other side is a collage of all the photos. These covers are laminated and then the book is coil bound by hand. It's about half way through the project that I realize what a huge endeavour it is but it is also at that point that I realize that I'm in too deep to abandon it.
So, as I was realizing that I still had so much to do...I was so thankful for a parent volunteer who stepped up to help me even when I insist I can be a martyr and do it all myself. I had intended on staying at school late to finish but she cut out all my covers, organized my photocopies, and stayed until all of the books were done. I'm so blessed by the families I work with. What a relief to have this project done and ready to go home on Friday.