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TeachNet NYC: Lesson Plans

Bon Appétit
Cooking Crepes in Ms. Stentella's French Class

Project URL:
http://teachnet-lab.org/ditmas/dstentella/crepes/crepes.html

How it works:

Bon Appétit
is a highly enjoyable interdisciplinary program that helps students achieve performance standards in Foreign Language, Art, Language Arts, Math, and Technology. The final product is a class PowerPoint presentation designed and produced by the students, who also make (and eat!) crepes. The program starts with an introduction to French cuisine via a virtual tour on the Internet. The students explore eating, cooking, and life in France. Cooperative groups are used for the majority of this lesson. By allowing the students to work in teams that are given specific roles, they gain self esteem and leadership expertise. Lessons cover table-setting vocabulary and restaurant conversational skills. After reviewing the crepe recipe, students pair up and do a mini WebQuest on crepes and find cultural tidbits about food in France. 


     Once ample research has been done, the class is ready for the hands-on portion of the lesson. The main goal is to cook, create, and eat crepes. The class divides into teams, with each team given a task: Set-up, Recorder/Photographer, Preparer, Filling, Cooking, and Clean-up. All tasks are written on large tablet paper and hung on a classroom wall or easel.  Each function is amply discussed and each team knows exactly what their job is. Next, the mixing, preparing, cooking, filling, cleaning, and--most importantly--eating takes place. For the final part of this project, the class creates a PowerPoint presentation about the entire experience. Digital photos are included as well as personal or reflective essays about what the student has taken away from this diverse cultural experience.

Standards addressed:  
The students develop an understanding of French culture and language through the use of many tools. They read, comprehend, and becoming familiar with a variety of documents. They write, speak, listen, and view  in French, and become familiar with the language's conventions, grammar, and usage. The students also address standards in English/Language Arts, Mathematics/Geometry, Art, Cooking, and Technology.  Most importantly, the students  take away valuable life skills and an enthusiasm for learning.

Materials used: 
The program requires the use of a French text book for vocabulary purposes. It also requires a computer with Internet access and PowerPoint and Microsoft Word software in addition to art supplies and a digital camera. To institute the cooking part of the project, you might want to cooperate with the home economics department and let the students learn to make crepes in the school kitchen. If your school is not equipped with a kitchen, you will need a portable range, frying pan, spatula, plates, cups, napkins, and all supplies included in the recipe.  If you are looking for a cross-disciplinary lesson, the math teacher may want to take a class trip to the supermarket and allow the students to shop for the specific ingredients using a budget and teams.

The students:
Bon Appétit was designed for an eighth-grade special education class that consisted of 13 students from a variety of different countries. The students had varied language and intelligence levels, as each of them has some sort of learning disability. 

Overall value:
Through the hands-on team structure of this project and the use of technology, students become infused with useful knowledge and life skills while developing a sense of leadership and self-esteem. They also step "outside of the box" that they live in and examine a different culture. The program also incorporates Gardner's Seven Theories of Intelligences, which permits students to actually produce something themselves, allowing for a creative and positive learning process while integrating technology. 

Tips: 
If you are working with a larger number of students when cooking, you might want to divide the class in two and have two crepe station setups. If your school is equipped with a kitchen or cooking facilities, work with that teacher and create an interdisciplinary lesson. Make sure to have adequate supervision!



   

About the teacher:
Danielle Stentella is a second-year French teacher at I.S.62 in Brooklyn, New York. She is in the process of completing her master's degree in education and is involved with many after-school volunteer programs to help her students build leadership and life skills.

Email:
dgirl119@aol.com

Subject Areas: 
Foreign Language
Art
Language Arts
Special Education
Technology

Grade Levels: 
7-8

 

 

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