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COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL Cooking science seems like magic to begin- ning cooks. Children are given an opportunity to experiment, ask questions, make predic- tions, and test those predictions. They will see the changes in matter, from liquid to solid, solid to liquid, and changes in color and texture. You can extend their knowledge of where foods come from by planting seeds in soil and studying the outcome. Consider investigating the different origins of foods included in the recipes. When the children prepare recipes, they de- velop their small- and large-motor skills and learn kinesthetically from touch. When they are cutting, chopping, and turning the pages of recipe books, children are developing their small-motor skills. When they are mixing, fold- ing, and rolling out ingredients, they are devel- oping large-motor skills. As children learn to take turns and share, they are developing their social and emotional skills. Children feel a sense of pride when they have completed a recipe. Cooking in small groups allows for children to take turns, develop inde- 2 Introduction pendence, understand cooperation, and become aware of and respect others. Of course cooking entails nutrition, an im- portant part of cooking and learning for chil- dren. All children are encouraged to try new foods, create healthy snacks and meals, and learn about food groups. Learning about the importance of exercise and being healthy is a significant part of cooking experiences. Getting Started “I can’t cook with my children because I don’t have a kitchen!” I often hear these exact words from many educators, teachers, parents, and child care providers. Would you believe you don’t need a kitchen to cook in your classroom or even in your home? With the encouragement of a colleague, I created a “Kitchen on Wheels” using an old water play table that had a top to work on with space underneath and inside for supplies. COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL