The Government have introduced a GCSE for cooking and nutrition that is now available in schools all over the UK, allowing students to “acquire a proper understanding of the scientific principle behind food nutrition, and use a number of practical cooking techniques to prepare and cook food.” Often catering-based or food-tech GCSEs aren’t given enough credit, being seen as a weaker choice of GCSE in comparison to a humanities subject. Yet, it is clear that cooking and nutrition skills that students acquire at a younger age play a fundamental role in providing students with a positive outlook and approach to their own health and diet.
Even if students don’t use these skills to pursue a career in the catering industry, the knowledge gained from a nutrition GCSE can be applied in day-to-day situations, helping ensure that health is prioritised.
Why is it important that we educate students on cooking/nutrition?
It is important that we are teaching nutrition in schools for a number of reasons. Firstly, it provides students with a basic understanding of cooking techniques and how to approach health and safety when in the kitchen. Secondly, it provides students with invaluable knowledge of nutrition, healthy eating and how to lead a healthier lifestyle. But most importantly, it provides them with a foundation of skills that they can use to succeed after they have completed their secondary education.
Why is this particularly relevant today?
In 2018, we are all too familiar with seeing headlines that focus on health and nutrition. More often than not, they are focusing on the crisis of obesity and the negative impacts of unhealthy eating, and less often looking at positive aspects of health. This course demands that students pay attention to what they put into the food they are making, what nutritional value it has and thus what they are putting into their bodies.
As part of a generation that has seen childhood obesity at its highest rate, as well as experienced the largest number of young adults battling with eating disorders, it is important that students are aware of how we can impact the statistics through the changes and choices we make in our diet. A healthy, balanced diet supports an immune system, and this is why the nutrition GCSE is a great way to make sure students are given the basic cooking skills and nutritional values, so they can leave school aware of how best to look after their minds and bodies.
If you want to find out more about the ways in which you can educate students and teaching nutrition in schools, head to our website. At Creative Learning Solutions, we offer courses equivalent to the Food Safety Level 2 and Food Nutrition & Healthy Eating. All of our courses follow a modular learning style that fits in with lessons and makes them ideal for students taking GCSE Food technology or GCSE catering.