Cooking in the classroom: To cook or not to cook!

This lesson uses the interview from Hedvig Endrei, from Hungary. In a labor camp during the war, Mrs. Endrei and her friends wrote out a book of recipes and she returned home with this book.  

This lesson uses her story and her recipes to engage students in an active project where they learn English, history - and even cooking. The lesson opens with a warm-up activity in which students ask their grandparents what they ate during the week, on weekends and on holidays.  They compare those answers with their own answers to those questions. Then students are divided into four groups and each group reads excerpts of Mrs. Endrei’s interview and does a project related to what they read: a timeline of her life, a report on her early life, a report on her time in the camp, menus based on Mrs. Endrei’s recipes. 

Students then cook several of Mrs. Endrei’s recipes, and debate three statements using Karl Popper’s methods: 1) History never changes our personal life; 2) We always must keep a kosher household; 3) Dreams can help us survive. 

The concluding activities consist of: translating the posters and Powerpoints into English, present the cooked recipes at the school’s festival, and have students collect their own favorite recipes, with photos, including those from Mrs. Endrei, into a cookbook.