Curriculum Statement – Food Preparation and Nutrition
Lead Teacher: Mrs H Waring
Food Technology is an inspiring, rigorous, and practical subject. Using creativity and imagination, students design and make products that solve real and relevant problems within a variety of contexts, considering their own and others’ needs, wants, and values. They acquire a broad range of subject knowledge and draw on disciplines such as mathematics, science and art. Students learn how to take risks, becoming resourceful, innovative, enterprising, and capable citizens. Through the evaluation of past and present design and technology, they develop a critical understanding of its impact on daily life and the wider world. High-quality design and technology education makes an essential contribution to the creativity, culture, wealth, and well-being of the nation.
Our curriculum aims to ensure that all students:
- develop the creative, technical, and practical expertise needed to perform everyday tasks confidently and to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world
- build and apply a repertoire of knowledge, understanding and skills in order to design and make high-quality prototypes and products for a wide range of users
- critique, evaluate and test their ideas and products and the work of others
- understand and apply the principles of nutrition and learn how to cook
There is significant variability in how primary schools approach teaching Food Technology at KS2 and our students enter secondary school with wide ranging experiences, knowledge, understanding and skills. Many of our students have limited cooking experience and some have limited understanding of basic daily tasks such as washing up. Learning to cook is a crucial life skill that enables students to feed themselves and others affordably and well, now and in later life. To succeed in Food Technology our students need to;
- Learn how to cook and apply the principles of nutrition and healthy eating.
- Develop a love of cooking as this opens a door to one of the greatest expressions of human creativity.
- Understand and apply the principles of nutrition and health
- Be able to cook a repertoire of predominantly savoury dishes so they are able to feed themselves and others a health and varied diet
- Be competent in a range of cooking techniques. For example, selecting and preparing ingredients; using utensils and electrical equipment; applying heat in different ways; using awareness of taste, texture, and smell to decide on how to season dishes and combine ingredients; adapting and using their own recipes
- Understand the source, seasonality, and characteristics of a broad range of ingredients.
- Be resourceful, innovative, resilient, reflective, and independent.
The curriculum focuses on providing the broadest opportunity for all students to develop the skills, knowledge and understanding to become expert cooks. It aims to develop student’s knowledge and understanding about the importance of good nutrition, the sources of nutrition and the importance of a balanced diet which caters for all dietary needs including those with specific nutritional needs. The curriculum also aims to develop student’s knowledge of where food comes from and the impact of their food choices on themselves, the economy and climate. As a direct result of our rural location and lack of diversity within the community, our students need to learn about local foods as well as national and global cuisine. Furthermore, our students need to develop an understanding of religious diets as well as cultural influences on cuisine.
From Year 7 students learn how to design, analyse, and evaluate the products they make. They start with learning the function and source of nutrients, as well as food hygiene and safety practices as these are fundamental to progression in Food Technology. In Year 7 and 8 students focus on developing knife skills, applying heat in different ways, preparing ingredients, and using utensils and electrical equipment, as these skills are critical for them to making increasingly complex dishes as they progress through the curriculum. Students develop evaluation skills and subject specific vocabulary from Year 7 to 11 and this is embedded throughout the curriculum. As student’s knowledge, skills and understanding develop they become more reflective, innovative, independent, resourceful, and resilient as learners. For example, in Year 7 students may begin with developing knife skills by making fruit salad and in KS4 progress to deboning a chicken. In KS4 students acquire knowledge about food commodities and their features, characteristics, and origins as well as their value in diet. They develop their knowledge and understanding of the principles of nutrition which includes the difference between macro and micro nutrients, their functions and sources, the consequences of a diet lacking in these nutrients and the required amounts for good health. Students learn where food comes from, how it is reared, grown, and caught and how they can reduce their carbon footprint by sourcing food locally and in season. To ensure our students develop an understanding of sustainability, food security and poverty the curriculum explores ways to reduce food waste and packaging.
As students progress through the curriculum, they develop more scientific understanding of macronutrients, the function of ingredients such as gelatine and can apply this knowledge and their practical making skills by creating dishes for people with a range of nutritional needs. As students progress, they apply their practical makings skills to more complex dishes such as choux pastry, food from around the world and dishes of their choice. Furthermore, they develop their design and evaluation skills. In Year 7 and 8 students develop sensory analysis skills to evaluate the characteristics of food which becomes increasingly more sophisticated as they progress through KS4. Throughout the curriculum students learn about food miles, our carbon footprint, types of farming and fishing and the ethics of sourcing food locally.
When designing our curriculum, we have considered the individual needs of our students. To ensure that students with SEND can develop the same knowledge and skills as their peers we adopt a range of strategies within the classroom such as in class support from a teaching assistant, smaller group teaching and adapted equipment where necessary to enable students to develop confidence as well as the knowledge and skills they need to progress. At KS4, where students are unable to meet the requirements of the assessment at GCSE, an alternative course is offered which enables students with more complex SEND to continue to develop the skills, knowledge and understanding required to be able to cook.
Prior knowledge is assessed at the start of each new unit of work. Verbal feedback is a feature of all lessons and allows any gaps in knowledge, skills and understanding to be address quickly. At the end of each unit, the outcomes of summative assessments are used to inform the curriculum and where needed adaptations are made. Peer and self-assessment are also a feature of how we assess learning as this enables students to develop essential evaluative skills. Practical work is formatively assessed weekly