Baking Anzac Cookies
By:Bee Wah Wong
Lots of literacy and numeracy were happening at the baking table. Older children took turns to read out the ingredients needed while the younger children helped with reading the measurement needed for each ingredient.
It was rewarding to watch our young ones helping one another out such as when Emily was having some difficulty trying to pour and measure a tablespoon of golden syrup before Tais spontaneously reached out to help her, and Arum kindly advising Cooper on rolling his dough with both hands. What a fantastic team of bakers we have at Titoki !
More mathematical concepts were explored as the children sorted and counted the near-perfect spherical dough and the slightly odd shaped ones on the baking tray.
Our team of ‘cookie monitors’ namely, Kyle, Glenn, Heath, Ruby and Ethan, ensured that all the cookies were “named” and gladly helped the younger tamariki write their names when needed.
There could not have been a more appropriate time to lead into the game of ‘Who stole the cookie from the cookie jar’ led by Tracie during mat-time when the classroom was filled with the smell of the freshly baked Anzac biscuits.
What learning do I think is happening here?
Children learning to bake and acquiring a basic life skill that will certainly come in useful. While children were having fun adding ingredients, stirring and rolling, they were unconsciously refining their small-motor skills too.The children also discover how things change when the environment is altered. Just watching the soft dough transform into delicious smelling cookies after twenty minutes in the hot oven helps the children to work out and form their own scientific theories. This simple baking session also fosters a sense of competence and independence when they finally smell and see the delicious looking cookies. The Maori pedagogy of tuakana-teina (elder-younger) where children learn to share their knowledge and skill between older and younger peers is strongly emulated by both the older and younger children during this group baking.
Opportunities and possibilities?
We will continue to give children opportunities for baking and other food preparation skills like making vegetarian rice rolls in order to maximise their holistic learning.