Culinary Kids: A Taste of Missouri


SPRINGFIELD — Students at Sherwood Elementary are getting a hands-on culinary experience, and having fun doing it. 

The project is called “A Taste of Missouri”, and it gets students out from behind the desk and puts them to work in an unconventional way. While it may be fun, these kids are fully invested in seeing their work pay off. 

Callie Baldwin has pulled double duty this week, as a teacher… and a kitchen manager. She is guiding her students through the Taste of Missouri project. 

“We start with a problem statement. How can we interest people to come and visit Missouri?” Baldwin says. “We talked about what Missouri shines with, and we ended up with food. Everyone has really strong memories with food.” 

Sounds simple, but there are a lot of moving parts to running a restaurant. 

“We went in to nutrition, and then we talked about our business model, advertisements, they’ve been researching recipes online,” says Baldwin.  

If you’re running a restaurant, you’ll need the proper equipment for a clean work environment. Just ask third grade student Rachel Leveille. 

“First you have to gather all the ingredients, make sure you are wearing the right clothing,” Rachel says. “You have to get aprons and hairnets and gloves and stuff, always make sure you wash your hands first. Then we start.” 

You’ll need a chef too. Third Grader James Deskins is the right guy for the job. It always helps if you love your craft. 

“I got to cook some pizza, we got to make the dough and stuff,” says James. “My favorite food? Probably pizza!” 

James says the project has even motivated him to give Mom a hand at home. 

“I don’t really cook with her very much, but last night I felt the urge to cook, and I cooked with her!” James says. 

All the donations and proceeds from this program will go towards a local charity, but the decision on which charity will be up to the students. 

The kids will make suggest charities that may have effected Sherwood Elementary most, and the students will vote on where that money should go. 

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