Learning about healthy nutritional practices has several positive implications for a student’s physical well-being.
Studies have shown that food habits learned at an early age are hard to influence and change and at Notre Dame the food curriculum allows pupils to develop knowledge and skills that will help them to achieve life skills in cooking and understand their importance in the development of a healthy lifestyle.
In Year 7, 8 and 9 pupils study Food and Nutrition for half the academic year and undertake a practical and written examination at the end of each module. Independent learning is rewarded with house points and the department has featured regularly in the school newsletter.
The Year 7 curriculum is directed towards the development of practical skills including the ability to work independently, to be well organised and to work safely and hygienically. The theory of the ‘Food safety and Hygiene’ is covered and practical tasks involving knife skills, using the different parts of the oven and working safely with high risk foods. The Year 8 curriculum builds on skills and nutritional knowledge and covers the Eat Well Plate which links in with Year 8 biology. Students will have practical experience of cooking a dish from each food group segment including Jam Swiss Roll, pizza swirls and Sausage Rolls. Practical skills taught include rubbing in, cake making and developing their own recipe based on a celebrity. In Year 9, recognizing the greater need for independence, students will make well-known dishes including a lemon flan, French galette and lasagna. Students’ also gain highly developed planning and baking skills through the Great British Bake Off competition.