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The Cookbook for Children with Special Needs by Deborah French Review

Reviewed by Gemma Berkul

I was extremely pleased to have received this cookbook for review. As a special needs teacher I thought this would be an ideal book to review with some of the pupils and teachers in my school.

We find cooking with our children an essential part of our curriculum as a lot of our children have issues around sensory and fine motor control. It is also a wonderful opportunity to facilitate language. Hence being excited to start using this book in the classroom.

This kinaesthetic opportunity enabled the children to be encouraged to learn valuable skills for example the social skill of turn taking. The recipes were simple to follow and also very motivating for the children. It’s great that there was level 1, level 2 and level 3 graded recipes. The fact there are ten recipes in each level enabled a great range of healthy choices, including both savoury and sweet. Because the recipes were all child friendly it meant that they were successful which boosted confidence and self-esteem.

I liked the idea of the chapters at the beginning of the book which consisted of; The story of food, keeping safe and getting started.

There is also an icon and skill glossary. All of the above was very visual and educational.

Each healthy recipe is easy to follow. It has an introductory paragraph and a photograph of what they were baking/cooking which is always useful for both adults and children! There is also an information box about the skills used and preparation time, as well as cooking time and yield.

The recipe pages also have an easy to follow step-by-step guide, which included information on the equipment and ingredients you will need.

For more learning opportunities for children who are of higher ability, there are pages at the back of book which give menu ideas and an index to gain more literacy skills. In addition, weighing and measuring the ingredients encourages numeracy skills too. Thus enabling this book to be an excellent cross- curriculum tool including science, literacy and numeracy.

This cookbook could be used in both the home and school environment. Thank you Deborah French for creating a little asset for my classroom.

Rating: 5/5

RRP: £14.99 (Hardback)

Available to buy from Jessica Kingsley Publishers here.


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