Multiple activity options are available for all lessons.
Local providers are required to provide all Cooking Matters participants with a grocery bag of ingredients for the recipe made in class. This requirement does not meet SNAP-Ed guidance for allowable food purchases.
Support for this requirement often comes from community partners such as a food pantry, retail grocer or a community sponsor.
A list of teaching supplies for implementation of Cooking Matters classes can be found at the bottom of this document. Local providers must either have the teaching supplies available or they can check them out from Solid Ground.
Solid Ground is the lead agency for Cooking Matters in the state of Washington and they have the responsibility to ensure the curriculum is implemented according to national guidelines. Solid Ground conducts training for the series classes at their office in Seattle, WA. Below are specific training requirements:
- Attend an in person orientation session at Solid Ground in Seattle.
- Attend volunteer training at Solid Ground in Seattle.
- Review Instructor Guide and materials for the Cooking Matters curriculum you will use.
- Observe another educator teach a Cooking Matters lesson (if possible)
Recipes are included for each lesson. Educators are highly encouraged to use recipes that are provided in the curriculum or those found on the Cooking Matters site, provided below. Recipes should always support core content of lessons. Other recommend recipes resources can be found below, please be sure to check the Cooking Matters Recipe Guidelines (see below) before using recipes outside of the curriculum:
Cooking Matters Recipe Guidelines
- Recipes must be low-cost
- Choose ingredients in their most whole form (e.g. whole carrots instead of baby carrots, a block of cheese instead of grated cheese, etc.)
- Choose packaged ingredients that are available in a store-brand equivalent
- Choose ingredients that are able to be used in multiple meals or snacks
- Choose ingredients available for purchase in bulk when possible
- Choose dried spices instead of fresh
- Always consider whether a less expensive form of an ingredient can be used
- Ingredients should be accessible to families (e.g. are the ingredients found in a mainstream supermarket in the area where the class is?)
- Recipes should be nutritious
- Vary the forms, types, and colors of fruits and vegetables
- Choose whole grains instead of refined grains
- Minimize the use of added sugars
- Use leaner cooking techniques and ingredients (e.g. bake instead of frying, use canola oil instead of margarine, use leaner meat or non-meat proteins)
- Limit sodium
- Use multiple food groups (for a snack, use at least two food groups, and for a meal, use at least three)
- Recipes should limit the use of special equipment
- Recipes should be relatively quick to prepare
- Recipes should be simple and explained clearly.
The extent to which a curriculum or program is delivered in accordance with the intended (and tested) design.
- Using program materials
- Adhering to recommended pacing
- Keeping the program’s instructional order
- Utilizing the program ‘routines’
- All teachers using the same materials to equalize student learning opportunities and meet instructional objectives
Making adjustments while delivering with fidelity
You can make some adjustments to the curriculum without impacting fidelity.
- Supplement core lessons with appropriate additional activities1
- Modify an activity (e.g. having participants measure shortening onto paper plate rather than making “Blubber Burgers” with actual hamburger buns, )
- Provide participants with coaching, ongoing support, and individual instruction when needed
- Adjust group size
- Increase opportunity for participants to engage and ask questions, and provide answers
Check with your supervisor for required evaluation tools and current evaluation protocol.
Please note: Solid Ground requires a specific pre/post survey for Cooking Matters. This is done in coordination with the Washington SNAP-Ed Evaluation Team.
Links to curriculum
To review the Cooking Matters series class curriculum and to find out how to become a satellite partner with Solid Ground please contact them at: email@example.com
1 Many curricula have several options for activities. Choose from these options first. If you plan to use additional activities, outside of the written curricula, please review with your supervisor to ensure they meet Snap-Ed guidance.