Is food tech basically just cookery?

(21 Posts)
angelsraiding Sat 09-Jul-16 20:44:40

Every secondary we've toured around seems to big up its food tech department, like we're supposed to be impressed. But isn't it just a fancy name for cookery? I wasn't aware that the country had a chef shortage, so I really don't get why they're so keen to shout about it. Can anyone enlighten me on why I should be so keen for my future Year 7 child to write profiles of celebrity chefs? (I kid you not - that was part of the sales pitch in one school I visited)

meditrina Sat 09-Jul-16 20:46:51

Unfortunately not.

I really wish there were good cookery/nutrition/home economics courses in schools.

Instead it's food tech, which involves only a modicum of cooking, plus plenty on food industry processes, design and marketing.

BennyTheBall Sat 09-Jul-16 20:48:23

Yes, it is just cookery with a bit of nutrition/hygiene thrown in.

It's quite a nice 'soft' subject to do when everything else is so academic and hard!

DampSqid Sat 09-Jul-16 20:48:30

Not really, it's less focused and much more boring

Freshprincess Sat 09-Jul-16 20:53:05

Mine have also learnt about food hygiene as well as what meditrina said. Actually very little cooking. No celebrity chef work as far as I know.

MrsExcited Sat 09-Jul-16 20:56:05

As we become more and more obese as a nation surely teaching children to cook and eat healthy is quite important?

In an ideal world the parents would but that hasn't been as effective as it should have been!!

sooperdooper Sat 09-Jul-16 20:59:39

Surely learning how to cook and nutrition is a basic life skill, I'd be pleased to see it as an important thing being taught in a school

Celeb chefs not so much, but I can see why they'd go down that route to get kids interested

Cocochoco Sat 09-Jul-16 21:00:19

Have to say I think it is brilliant. Dd is in y7 and has done one term of food tech. She cooks dinner for us all sometimes - pasta bake - and makes her and friends lunch often.

sooperdooper Sat 09-Jul-16 21:01:46

Oh sorry missed food hygiene, yes that's a vwry important thing to learn along with the difference between use by/sell by dates etc, I think there's a lot of very important things to be learned in food tech

AuntieStella Sat 09-Jul-16 21:03:23

What GCSE Food Tech is typically all about:

www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/design-and-technology/gcse/design-and-technology-food-technology-4545/past-papers-and-mark-schemes

It's not a cookery course.

clary Sat 09-Jul-16 23:41:04

My DS1 did GCSE Catering which they do for gCSE instead of food tech; he did lots of practical ie cooking which is surely a good thing, but also a lot of stuff about basic food hygiene and work on eg how to make menus appealing to children or how to cater for vegetarians etc so really interesting an useful for life.

Bit better than learning about river meanders and erosion I reckon! (but then I am not a geographer!)

Grikes Sun 10-Jul-16 00:36:00

It can't be worse than IDT. I asked my DD why she wanted to do it instead of Geography. Her answer is I like to make stuff with my hands. What can you do....? Say No?

AChickenCalledKorma Sun 10-Jul-16 09:36:01

Year 7 food tech at Dd's school included loads of practical cookery (of stuff that we have all enjoyed eating), plus food hygiene, knife skills, recipe creation and nutrition. It's been a nice bit of light relief from book learning and has taught her some useful life skills.

They big it up because most kids love to eat!! I also recently discovered that Dd's friend is jealous, because her extremely expensive and sought after school doesn't offer it - which seemed somewhat ironic!

DontCallMeBaby Sun 10-Jul-16 21:26:24

I bloody love DD doing food tech. She's made fruit salad (so that's knife skills, basically), couscous salad, pasta salad, muffins, scones, pizza, would have made flapjacks but was on a trip ... She can now read a recipe (well, except when she inadvertently tripled the amount of baking powder in a cake, that was a learning experience), is no longer terrified of the oven, and has just acquired some confidence in the kitchen.

Some of it's a bit dogmatic, a bit old-fashioned 'marge is better than butter', and the teacher has some odd opinions, but it's good -real life skills, and like others have said, a break from the books.

I suspect schools in part sell it because it looks impressive - a good teaching kitchen is more impressive than a classroom. Plus probably smells better if it's had something nice cooked in it recently.

MyVisionsComeFromSoup Tue 12-Jul-16 21:06:41

Ft up till y9 was a lot of cooking and basic skills at our school, I still use dd1s recipe booklet, a d dd2 has an amazing recipe for cheesecake.
But, FT GCSE was all about the design process and how to improve your recipe, so poor dd2 spent more time working on the pre-improvement versions so she could show how she'd changed them to her final version , instead of making things she was good at. Plus the writing up of stuff, that took more time than any other subject

sunnydayinmay Sat 16-Jul-16 18:51:15

Food tech has been the biggest pain in my ds's year. He adores food and cooking, and has spent the year being told by his teacher that he should replace his cheese with low fat cheese, cut out meat etc. He was actually really looking forward to it, but has become completely uninspired and, at one point, got himself in a complete state about the amount of food he eats.

roundaboutthetown Sat 16-Jul-16 22:25:31

Ds1 has really enjoyed food tech this term. He wouldn't choose it as a GCSE, but it appears to be pretty much nothing but cooking, baking and food hygiene in Y7. The whole family has therefore enjoyed food tech... Being a child severely lacking in practical skills who actively avoids any attempts to get him to do this sort of thing with me at home, it has been fantastic that he has had to do it at school and realised it can be quite a rewarding experience. He's even promised to try out the recipes again at home in the holidays and it has boosted his self-esteem no end that he has developed a few more practical skills.

PrimalLass Sun 17-Jul-16 07:11:05

Some of it's a bit dogmatic, a bit old-fashioned 'marge is better than butter'

I worked on a food tech book and queried this. It is a ropey message to be giving children.

Seacrets Mon 18-Jul-16 19:45:11

If only it was about cookery. Lots of time wasted on useless projects which did nothing to teach about basic food preparation and cooking. Maybe a good teacher can make a difference?
I had to teach DC to cook myself.

tenbyeight Tue 19-Jul-16 14:57:42

My ds s okay with food tech. In fact I try to persuade him to include it for his GCSEs. Whether it s mainly about cooking or nutrition it is a useful everyday life skill. Tbh how much maths do we need to apply to our everyday life as grown up.

BoneyBackJefferson Wed 20-Jul-16 22:38:20

Don't fall for the "its a soft/easy subject" mantra put about by those that don't know.

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