Homemade Class Cookbook: A New Twist on Apple for the Teacher

Last February I got a nice handwritten letter from a friend’s grandson who was studying the history and geography of major cities in the United States. He asked most politely if I would send him a postcard from my town so he could pin it up on the classroom bulletin board with postcards other students were getting from around the country.

This was such a brilliant class project that I couldn’t help but admire the teacher for coaching the students so well, and also for providing a wonderful activity and lesson that will be remembered long after the school year ends.

Teachers truly are some of the most important people in our children’s lives, and they deserve extra special surprises now and then that will delight them and show how appreciated they really are.

Sometimes classes will take up collections of cash to buy the teacher a special gift for Christmas or as a farewell thank you before summer break.  Wouldn’t it be nice to give a class cookbook to the teacher, created by each child in the class submitting at least one recipe?  What a wonderful memento for the teacher of that moment in time!  It is possible (and it’s not such a formidable project) when using my Matilda’s Fantastic Cookbook Software.

Here are some other thoughts to help you personalize the class cookbook for the teacher:

Notify Parents
If there is a class den mother (as we used to call them), that person could coordinate the collection of class recipes. If possible, send a note home with each child indicating the surprise nature of the class cookbook and a submission deadline.  Better yet, obtain parents’ emails and communicate that way so the teacher doesn’t know. After the recipes are submitted, perhaps another volunteer could type them into my recipe template (or cut-and-paste them from parents’ emails into the recipe template).

Choose a Theme
If you know the teacher well, you could customize the class cookbook by asking for recipes using a certain ingredient the teacher likes. Perhaps the class is very international, so a class cookbook of international recipes would be perfect. Recipes featuring apples and cherries make nice theme additions, too. In this instance, you could name the cookbook “Mr. Sheridan: You are the Apple of Our Eyes – Fifth Grade Class Cookbook, June 2019,” or something similar.

Keep Recipes Simple
Remember that busy teachers or their families often don’t have a lot of time to cook fancy or expensive dishes, so some easy family favorites would be welcome for sure. Recipes with only a few ingredients would be preferable, although don’t be afraid to include more complicated dishes if they are favorites the child wants to share.

Add Photos & Stories
Using my Matilda’s Fantastic Cookbook Software, a photo of each child could be included with the recipe. And be sure to include a little story about how the teacher has influenced each child in the class, or why this particular recipe is the child’s favorite, or just a thank you note written in the child’s own handwriting, scanned and added as a photo in the “People” template.

I am sure that any teacher receiving a class cookbook as a gift would be overwhelmed by the emotion of receiving it, as well as the entertaining aspect of reading all the recipes and stories. It is destined to be a treasured gift for many years to come.

By the way, my friend’s grandson got the top award in his class for having received the most postcards from around the country. Wonder how that happened, tee hee!

Happy cookbooking


About Erin Miller

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