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Teacher Spotlight - Chelsea Griffin

Name: Chelsea Griffin Location: Larkspur, Ca Occupation: Teacher and CEO of Kidventures Cooking Club Business: Kidventures

Kidventures offers cooking classes, virtual cooking classes, and cooking parties! At Kidventures Cooking Club, your child will have fun, cook a meal, and get creative! What inspired you to start Kidventures? I have been an elementary school teacher for over six years. I love teaching, and I wanted to find a way to support kids in getting creative outside of school. Cooking is my favorite hobby because it is fun, you get to use your hands, and you can get creative! I believe cooking builds confidence, and teaches kids to be patient, independent, and focused. I thought it would be wonderful to combine my love for teaching and cooking, and now here we are! How are classes structured?

Cooking Club is a two hour cooking class, in person or virtually. Right now, all classes are virtual. We begin by sharing about our day and learning the rules of cooking club: stay present (for safety and to follow directions), make sure your hands are always clean, and have fun! Students cook one entree and one dessert in every class. We also play trivia, have dance parties, and get to know each other better. After class, students' families enjoy their Kidventures meal for dinner.

What age group do you work with?

Cooking Club is open to all ages!

How did COVID affect Kidventures?

Kidventures originally included a summer camp and in person cooking classes throughout the year. Our summer camp was organized for field trips each day, so it is not feasible during COVID times. Cooking club became virtual! It has also changed from the kids in class eating together, to families eating the meal together. It is a great confidence boost for the kids, when their families enjoy the meal.

What are the benefits of children taking cooking classes?

There are many benefits to children taking cooking classes. As an educator, I know how important it is to allow children to be independent. When a parent does everything for their child, they are sending the message that the child is less capable. When children can complete their own tasks, it builds confidence. Also, cooking is a creative outlet for children. I always tell the kids, "You are the chef, you get to decide." In Cooking Club, the kids learn facts about the food they're making. They get a chance to build connections with others and have fun safely during the COVID rollercoaster. Cooking can be calming because you need to be present and work with your hands. Lastly, they learn how to cook! Cooking is an essential skill for everyone.

What inspired you to become a teacher and work with children?

As a child, school was a happy place for me. I loved it, and I loved learning new things. As I grew up, I noticed this was not the case for all children. This made me feel passionate about becoming a teacher and sharing my love for learning with children. I always believed there was a way for all children to feel happy, smart, confident at school.

What is the best advice you received or lessons learned as someone who works with children that parents can use?The greatest lessons I learned in the classroom are: teach your child how to do something, do not do it for them, unconditional love and support is key to every child's success, and children learn everything from modeling. It is so much easier in the moment to do something for your child, especially when you are busy, but it is so much easier in the future to teach them how to do it. Kids are extremely capable, they can do it all! I know that when children feel loved and supported, they are willing to take risks, and that is when they really grow. The phrase do as I say, not as I do does not work! Kids copy what they see. How do you practice self care?I practice self care by cooking often, doing yoga, and spending time with family. The kitchen really is my happy place! What are some of your favorite children's books? I Wish You More by Amy Krouse Rosenthal The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein Dear Girl by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Paris Rosenthal Dear Boy by Jason Rosenthal and Paris Rosenthal The Bad Seed by Jory Jon Nerdy Berdy by Aaron Reynolds The Day You Begin by Jacqueline Woodson What do you wish for your students?

I wish my students ...

- Feel comfortable in their own skin

- Feel proud of who they are

- Have empathy and compassion for others

- Will take risks

- Enjoy learning

- Are happy

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