Monday, July 12, 2010

Cakes: You have to add sugar and that's it! Recipes from the sandbox

This documentation came out of my 2007 archives:

I noticed the children were very interested in cooking in the sandbox, so I documented their recipes:

Revisiting this documentation, I have a lot of questions for the children about their recipes. For example, I want to know when, with who, and why they eat these things. I want to know what flavor the hot lava adds. Where do you get hot lava? Perhaps we would experiment and see how frosting tastes with basil, salt and sprinkles. Come back children, come back!

What questions would you ask? How would you extend their experiences?


  1. Hi Erin,
    This isn't the feedback you asked for, but I'm noticing that the children are showing what they know about time, the relationship between heat and cooking, spices and flavors. I have done some cooking with children, but have always had to bring in my electric skillet and food mill for making applesauce, pumpkin puree, tomato sauce, or even play dough.

    Christina Sales, from the Regent's School at Northern Iowa University wrote about constructivist cooking activities. The children tried several ways to make cupcakes or muffins, with control over proportions of milk and muffin mix. I haven't tried it yet, but it really lets the children try their own ideas. DeVries, R., Zan, B., Hildebrandt, C., Edmiaston, R., & Sales, C. (2002). I really like the book: Developing constructivist early childhood curriculum: Practical principles and activities. New York: Teachers College Press. You can check out an article by Rheta DeVries at

  2. Ms. Cane,

    Thank you for your thoughtful comment. It always helps to have another set of eyes. The heat, cooking, and time concepts are an interesting relationship. I would love to hear more of the children's ideas on this.

    I will see if I can get the book you recommend through the University library, thank you so much!


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