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To tell dd she is not to take Food Tech for GCSE

(86 Posts)
Chopstheduck Fri 31-Jan-14 17:15:12

dd is quite keen to, options coming up. I don't want her to, because I feel the standard of teaching for it is appalling. The recipes are dire, the methods are terrible.

I can cook, dd can cook very well too, but she is picking up bad habits now from school. I feel she would be better off picking another subject and continuing to cook at home. DD is keen because she enjoys cooking and she is getting top marks in the subject at school. Mainly because we have been adapting the recipes at home.

I know we could continue to adapt, but she doesn't have much control over the method, and it is gutting to have good food wrecked by over or under cooking at school. They cooked burgers last week, and half the children had stomach upsets because they baked them in the oven and not for long enough.

I will be chatting to the teacher before the options evening, at parents evening and will raise my concerns. (tactfully wink) but AIBU to have an opinion over what is ultimately my dd's GCSE choices?

mysteryfairy Fri 31-Jan-14 17:22:43

I didn't let my DS2 do it though he was forced to take a tech and thought that was the best of a bad lot. In my case it was because I couldn't face the thought of two more years of 11 pm/7 am dashes to sainsburys to buy out of season and ridiculously specific ingredients.

DS2 did Resistant Materials instead and we all invested huge amounts of effort and emotion in his portfolio and practical work. The teacher was appallingly bad and despite putting in more effort for this than any other subject DS got a C in an otherwise straight run of A* /A.

So my view is nobody ibu to avoid any form of tech subject. They are lads of work for dubious benefit.

SpocksThirdEar Fri 31-Jan-14 17:23:56

DS wanted to do food tech GCSE too but couldn't because it meant he wouldn't be able to do other subjects he wanted to do due to time tabling (he had to also choose to do Media or IT, neither of which he wanted to do)

Maybe your DD will have the same problem
If you're lucky!

brettgirl2 Fri 31-Jan-14 17:25:31

yabu. If she has to take another tech subject she finds hard/ doesn't like it will come back to haunt you.

HarrietSchulenberg Fri 31-Jan-14 17:27:20

Check the syllabus. Much of the GCSE work is researching their own recipes to suit given scenarios, e.g. a sweet or savoury biscuit to suit a specific dietary requirement (coleac, diabetic etc.). Another one has been to create a dish that fulfills the nutritional requirements for a school dinner.
Evaluation and adaptation are important.
Much more scope to cook own recipes and use initiative.

MoominIsGoingToBeAMumWaitWHAT Fri 31-Jan-14 17:27:28

I was going to say YABU if that's what she wants to do, but the course sounds horrific and I'd do my best to sway her from it if I were you.

As for your wider question, YANBU to want to have a say - YWBU to dictate to her what she can and can't do at GCSE. The actual subjects studied at GCSE have little bearing on the rest of her life after applying to sixth form/college if that's what she's hoping to do - many courses will ask for a pass/a B in the subjects to be studied.

januaryjojo Fri 31-Jan-14 17:28:17

My dd did food tech for gcse.

It was a sodding nightmare and very expensive.

And tbh barely worth the effort she put in.

HarrietSchulenberg Fri 31-Jan-14 17:30:17

Sorry, posted too soon. Skills demonstrated by this qualification would be research, evaluation, time management, ability to multi-task and organisation, in addition to the obvious cooking skills.

It's often seen as a soft option subject, but, having supported children in these classes, I can safely say that it isn't.

Shente Fri 31-Jan-14 17:30:58

Well I'm not sure, I think if there is a real problem with teaching it is worth talking to school about that but if she otherwise has a good set of facilitating subjects it might be a good choice to do something she feels will be quite easy and enjoyable. In my school it seems to have a noticeably lower workload than the other tech subjects.

RoseRedder Fri 31-Jan-14 17:31:05

I think yanbu to suggest to your DD why you think it's a bad idea

What would concern me if I was having to pay for the ingredients every week. Would this be the case for your dd?

I'd speak to the schol though if they are actually potentially causing folk to eat undercooked food...that's the issue to address I think

blahblahblah2014 Fri 31-Jan-14 17:32:00

waste of time and effort soft subject - Didn't even know you could get a GCSE in this!

Chopstheduck Fri 31-Jan-14 17:32:27

Just to add actually, the alternative would be DT, which she is also very good at.

Both DT, and Food teachers are both keen for her to take their respective subjects.

The syllabus sounds more like what I would have hoped for if she was to take it, will be investigating that when we go to the options evening. Just depends really jsut how much scope there is.

It all does feel a waste though, since she will learn far more cooking at home that she ever will at school. I will happily cook for England and she has been helping me out for a few years already.

Chopstheduck Fri 31-Jan-14 17:33:19

'What would concern me if I was having to pay for the ingredients every week. Would this be the case for your dd?'

Yes we would and it is a factor. blush I hate paying otu for ingredients that ultimately end up in the bin. I LOATHE wasting food.

uselessinformation Fri 31-Jan-14 17:35:56

they have to take 11 or 12 subjects so why not let her do one she enjoys. Ds choose drama - he's not going to make a career out of it but he enjoys it and there are transferable skills.

livelablove Fri 31-Jan-14 17:36:00

It is only worth it if she really wants to work in the catering industry. Or if she has to take a tech subject. If not and she just wants to learn to cook you could make some kind of agreement to teach her and let her cook dinner and some cakes and puddings every week. Also explain your reasons to her.

mymatemax Fri 31-Jan-14 17:36:32

tbh I have let ds chose whatever subjects he enjoys doing on the basis that he will put the work in & get a good mark.

I don't agree with how they teach one of the subjects he has taken but he's enjoying it & getting good grades so that's what counts.

EverythingInMjiniature Fri 31-Jan-14 17:37:38

My dt gcse was a while ago now blush but I spent loads on materials, paint etc. Also food prep has a time frame, unlike a bloody cabinet!

MoominIsGoingToBeAMumWaitWHAT Fri 31-Jan-14 17:38:35

The whole 'don't take it it's a soft subject' business is nonsense. Kids take 9 or 10 GCSEs or more - I wound up with 13 - including two arguably 'soft subjects', didn't do me any harm at all. Taking one or two subjects she enjoys could improve her performance in others - it did for me, looking forwards to Leisure and Tourism and Music lessons helped me to power through the lessons I hated grin

ImATotJeSuisUneTot Fri 31-Jan-14 17:42:15

A soft subject?

Right. grin

clearly you know NOTHING

firesidechat Fri 31-Jan-14 17:42:32

I studied home economics at school many years ago. I suppose the name home economics gives it away really. It was wonderful and helped to nurture a life times love of cooking. We were taught all the basic skills and also some quite advanced techniques. I made my own mayonnaise for the final exam.

On the other hand my daughter did food tech. It was a complete and utter joke. 1001 ways to cook a chocolate muffin and a bit of messing around with packaging designs. Unless things have seriously changed in the last 10 years then I would never suggest anyone with an interest in food should attempt it.

Such a shame when home cooking from scratch is a dying art and a lack of skill in the kitchen is having a major impact on general health.

mymatemax Fri 31-Jan-14 17:44:34

Moomin, I agree. DS1 is loving Drama as its a bit lighter than all the endless writing he has to do in History!

Orangeanddemons Fri 31-Jan-14 17:45:21

Nobody ibu avoiding tech subjectsangry

I'm a tech teacher. Where do you think the clothes you wear, the chairs you sit on, the computer you're mumsnetting on, the car you drive came from then?

As for soft subject. Ha ha. Dt is actually a STEM subject. One of my ex students works for Alexander McQueen. Good dt is about evaluating, risk taking, independence, problem solving. All the qualities employers are looking for. They are NOT dubious qualities. My classes usually get A or A*

blahblahblah2014 Fri 31-Jan-14 17:46:58

My kids school doesn't do ANY soft subject, no tech at all, time is better spent on proper subjects at ths age

ImATotJeSuisUneTot Fri 31-Jan-14 17:47:53

'Unless things have changed in the past 10 years'

10 years is a long time, especially in education things have probably changed umpteen times. grin

Chopstheduck Fri 31-Jan-14 17:48:16

advanced techniques these days seems to be how to make up a packet of pizza dough <sigh>
Though that was an improvement on the food module at GB where they spread tomato puree on slices of bread.

dd can make mayo, and fresh pasta, pizza dough, pastry, cupcakes. She knows her spices, can make curries, chapatis, naan bread. It's just going to be a waste isn't it!

The only advantages I can see is the planning side of it. I think she is seeing it as a subject where she is guaranteed an A. But that's not a given considering it isn't all about cooking skills.

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