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Old 03-24-2008, 08:41 PM   #21
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You can run around naked, walk, and people got by for tens of thousands of years without computers,
I tried the naked thing but it didn't work out too well for me . . . It seems there are some crazy laws about that.
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Old 03-25-2008, 08:06 AM   #22
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I basically agree with you, Pancho, but I'm going to play the devil's advocate here.
We all wear clothes everyday. Shouldn't everyone be capable of making a dress and a pair of pants, if necessary? Most of us drive cars at least some of the time. Shouldn't we all be able to perform all the required maintenance and at least simple car repairs? What about plumbing skills? Don't we all use the facilities every day?
I agree on all of these things. People should be able to do all of these basic things or at least understand them. Yes you do need to be taught and that was sort of my point. These things are important even if today it is sometimes easier and more efficient to get others to do them for you. Still you never know when you will find yourself in a pinch and need to do something for yourself.

If you cant change a tire, cook a potato, sew a patch on your jeans or hold a hammer you are pretty helpless. Someone who could slaughter and cook a chicken, rebuild a transmission, tailor a suit and install a water heater would be exceptional. At risk of derailing this thread my opinion is that shcools could focus a bit more on providing basic life skills (home ec, autoshop etc) instead of test scores.

I am often amazed that the people working at the supermarket checkout dont know what basic vegetables are. They cant identify things like squash they just hold it up and look at you quizzically... makes me wonder what they grew up eating. How can someone who cant even identify basic foods that are not in a paper sack provide for themselves and their family?
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Old 03-25-2008, 01:01 PM   #23
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We have a young woman who stays with us often and we have come to affectionately call her our "rent-a-daughter". When we first met her, she was not interested in cooking whatsoever because her mother NEVER cooked and didn't even have a stove in the house (seriously).

We had known her awhile but the first time we spent time together was when DH and I volunteered to cook for one week at a youth camp. She was assigned as kitchen helper and did not have a clue. I assigned her things like peeling potatoes or making salad at first and could see she was watching every move I made in cooking the main items. By the second day she was asking questions and assisting on harder tasks, but needing lots of help. I had never seen a 20 year old who had NEVER had anything to do with preparing food. By the end of the week I could see that she really wanted to learn.

She came to live with us for awhile after and would often ask to help with dinner and even made a few of her own. The following summer she asked if I would give her a reference for a camp cook position for 2 months. When I got the reference called I found out it was a "head cook" position. She got it and while it was a struggle, she did very well.

Last summer when we went away for 3 months to cook at another camp she stayed at our house and had access to all my cookbooks and culinary school books. By the time we got back she was out-cooking me! I was so proud.

I think what a lot of it is boils down to is a passion to learn, no matter what your background. I agree in many cases "I can't cook" relates to "I don't want to cook"; however, in this case this person had absolutely no exposure to cooking and has turned into a really good cook with a little encouragement.
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Old 03-25-2008, 01:24 PM   #24
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We have a young woman who stays with us often and we have come to affectionately call her our "rent-a-daughter". When we first met her, she was not interested in cooking whatsoever because her mother NEVER cooked and didn't even have a stove in the house (seriously).

We had known her awhile but the first time we spent time together was when DH and I volunteered to cook for one week at a youth camp. She was assigned as kitchen helper and did not have a clue. I assigned her things like peeling potatoes or making salad at first and could see she was watching every move I made in cooking the main items. By the second day she was asking questions and assisting on harder tasks, but needing lots of help. I had never seen a 20 year old who had NEVER had anything to do with preparing food. By the end of the week I could see that she really wanted to learn.

She came to live with us for awhile after and would often ask to help with dinner and even made a few of her own. The following summer she asked if I would give her a reference for a camp cook position for 2 months. When I got the reference called I found out it was a "head cook" position. She got it and while it was a struggle, she did very well.

Last summer when we went away for 3 months to cook at another camp she stayed at our house and had access to all my cookbooks and culinary school books. By the time we got back she was out-cooking me! I was so proud.

I think what a lot of it is boils down to is a passion to learn, no matter what your background. I agree in many cases "I can't cook" relates to "I don't want to cook"; however, in this case this person had absolutely no exposure to cooking and has turned into a really good cook with a little encouragement.
I love that story, LPB! We never know what we can and can't do until we try. I agree with that last paragraph... and that concept goes for alot of other areas in life too.
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Old 03-25-2008, 01:31 PM   #25
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At risk of derailing this thread my opinion is that shcools could focus a bit more on providing basic life skills (home ec, autoshop etc) instead of test scores.
Amen!!!! Sadly, so many things like home ec, shop, music, art and even PE have been discontinued in school. I know that even when I was in school, there was no home ec or shop at the school I went to. It would have helped a lot if I had even had one semester of home ec.
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Old 03-25-2008, 01:33 PM   #26
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I think what a lot of it is boils down to is a passion to learn, no matter what your background. I agree in many cases "I can't cook" relates to "I don't want to cook"; however, in this case this person had absolutely no exposure to cooking and has turned into a really good cook with a little encouragement.
You deserve a huge pat on the back for this! Anytime a person takes the time and makes the effort to teach another, you change their lives!!!
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Old 03-25-2008, 01:48 PM   #27
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We have a young woman who stays with us often and we have come to affectionately call her our "rent-a-daughter". When we first met her, she was not interested in cooking whatsoever because her mother NEVER cooked and didn't even have a stove in the house (seriously).

We had known her awhile but the first time we spent time together was when DH and I volunteered to cook for one week at a youth camp. She was assigned as kitchen helper and did not have a clue. I assigned her things like peeling potatoes or making salad at first and could see she was watching every move I made in cooking the main items. By the second day she was asking questions and assisting on harder tasks, but needing lots of help. I had never seen a 20 year old who had NEVER had anything to do with preparing food. By the end of the week I could see that she really wanted to learn.

She came to live with us for awhile after and would often ask to help with dinner and even made a few of her own. The following summer she asked if I would give her a reference for a camp cook position for 2 months. When I got the reference called I found out it was a "head cook" position. She got it and while it was a struggle, she did very well.

Last summer when we went away for 3 months to cook at another camp she stayed at our house and had access to all my cookbooks and culinary school books. By the time we got back she was out-cooking me! I was so proud.

I think what a lot of it is boils down to is a passion to learn, no matter what your background. I agree in many cases "I can't cook" relates to "I don't want to cook"; however, in this case this person had absolutely no exposure to cooking and has turned into a really good cook with a little encouragement.
Very cool story!!!
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Old 03-25-2008, 02:03 PM   #28
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At risk of derailing this thread my opinion is that shcools could focus a bit more on providing basic life skills (home ec, autoshop etc) instead of test scores.
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Amen!!!! Sadly, so many things like home ec, shop, music, art and even PE have been discontinued in school. I know that even when I was in school, there was no home ec or shop at the school I went to. It would have helped a lot if I had even had one semester of home ec.
As someone who is married to a former schoolteacher now in administration, I have to say it's not "the schools" that focus on test scores - it's parents and politicians. They are the ones who demanded and passed the laws mandating practically constant testing - trust me, teachers don't like it. They went into teaching because they like *teaching*.

And school districts are not the ones who cut taxes to the point that many schools can no longer afford to offer "frills" like home ec, music, art and PE. Those subjects don't get tested, so they don't get taught. If your job depended on high test scores, you'd teach to the test, too.
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Old 03-25-2008, 02:17 PM   #29
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As someone who is married to a former schoolteacher now in administration, I have to say it's not "the schools" that focus on test scores - it's parents and politicians. They are the ones who demanded and passed the laws mandating practically constant testing - trust me, teachers don't like it. They went into teaching because they like *teaching*.

And school districts are not the ones who cut taxes to the point that many schools can no longer afford to offer "frills" like home ec, music, art and PE. Those subjects don't get tested, so they don't get taught. If your job depended on high test scores, you'd teach to the test, too.
Completely true! I'm pretty sure we all regard teachers as unsung heroes. And they certainly have the least amount of input as to what each year's curriculum and requirements will be. Still, I've seen blame laid upon teachers for all the problems in school systems so it's good that you point this out. I was just commenting on how sad it is that these things are no longer available to kids. It's just as sad that very few moms can be stay at home for any length of time so that they could help teach these things. But I don't blame moms for having to work to provide for the family's basic needs.
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Old 03-25-2008, 02:22 PM   #30
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Completely true! I'm pretty sure we all regard teachers as unsung heroes. And they certainly have the least amount of input as to what each year's curriculum and requirements will be. Still, I've seen blame laid upon teachers for all the problems in school systems so it's good that you point this out. I was just commenting on how sad it is that these things are no longer available to kids. It's just as sad that very few moms can be stay at home for any length of time so that they could help teach these things. But I don't blame moms for having to work to provide for the family's basic needs.
I agree, it is sad. I think teachers are the most obvious, accessible target for people's frustration with the schools. I did take a home ec class in school - I remember hemming a skirt in study hall once because it was the only homework I had that day Kids do need a well-rounded education.
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Old 03-25-2008, 02:29 PM   #31
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Amen!!!! Sadly, so many things like home ec, shop, music, art and even PE have been discontinued in school. I know that even when I was in school, there was no home ec or shop at the school I went to. It would have helped a lot if I had even had one semester of home ec.
I totally agree with you Fisher's Mom and with Pancho. School systems seem to be cutting back on anything relating to "real life". Our school district just decided to remove all junk food vending machines from high schools so that the students will eat better. That is good in theory; however, the revenues from those machines went into field trips, sports and other extracarricular activities which are now in jeopardy. I didn't get much out of home ec because I learned about cooking and sewing from my Mom starting at 8 years old! But many of my friends had working mothers or ones that weren't into those things. And I think that is even more prevelant today. Same with Auto tech and shop as well. LIFESKILLS!!!!!!
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Old 03-25-2008, 02:31 PM   #32
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You deserve a huge pat on the back for this! Anytime a person takes the time and makes the effort to teach another, you change their lives!!!
Thanks, but I think my "daughter" is the one who deserves the pat for not falling in her (real) Mom's footsteps!
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Old 03-25-2008, 04:59 PM   #33
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One of me best friends swore she could not cook and could no "use that bottom thing" (the oven). She could use the outdoor grill, but not the stove or oven. She always loved to come to dinner and loved my cooking. So I offered to teach here. Simple as that. I asked her what she wanted to learn to make first so she would make somenthing SHE wanted. She picked apple pie, so she could make it for here husband. I found a very basic pie and used a refrigerated crust. We made 2. I made one and she made one, step-by-step together. Success! And as we were baking I learned a few things that were her basic problems. She never preheated the oven, just turned it on and put the food in and she always left the rack at the lowest setting. We had a few other lessons, burgers, chicken, other basic things. She learned not to use the hightest setting on the burners, except to boil water, how to preheeat a pan other basics. No she calls me when she tries a new recipe or has a success.

Now we get together every year to bake dozens and dozens of christmas cookies over tow days (the record was 12 different types of cookies that made about 5 dozen each) and split the results!
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Old 03-25-2008, 05:35 PM   #34
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One of me best friends swore she could not cook and could no "use that bottom thing" (the oven). She could use the outdoor grill, but not the stove or oven. She always loved to come to dinner and loved my cooking. So I offered to teach here. Simple as that. I asked her what she wanted to learn to make first so she would make somenthing SHE wanted. She picked apple pie, so she could make it for here husband. I found a very basic pie and used a refrigerated crust. We made 2. I made one and she made one, step-by-step together. Success! And as we were baking I learned a few things that were her basic problems. She never preheated the oven, just turned it on and put the food in and she always left the rack at the lowest setting. We had a few other lessons, burgers, chicken, other basic things. She learned not to use the hightest setting on the burners, except to boil water, how to preheeat a pan other basics. No she calls me when she tries a new recipe or has a success.

Now we get together every year to bake dozens and dozens of christmas cookies over tow days (the record was 12 different types of cookies that made about 5 dozen each) and split the results!
Kudos to you for this, Dave! That's what my neighbor and my friends here did for me - taught me the basics that make the difference in a successful dish or one that goes in the trash. You're a gem and I'm very glad you found DC!
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Old 03-25-2008, 06:07 PM   #35
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I wish i could find someone that would care enough to let me help em!
Everyone I know thinks i go to too much trouble to cook.... make too much work for myself. I CANNOT convince them that I love love love it, and it is not work to me. It's fun! I know they know i think its fun but i cant tell them in any way shape or form it is NOT work to me!!
The dishes on the other hand......
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Old 03-25-2008, 06:28 PM   #36
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I wish i could find someone that would care enough to let me help em!
Everyone I know thinks i go to too much trouble to cook.... make too much work for myself. I CANNOT convince them that I love love love it, and it is not work to me. It's fun! I know they know i think its fun but i cant tell them in any way shape or form it is NOT work to me!!
The dishes on the other hand......
Suzi I totally understand what you are saying. Before I took my culinary course and was cooking for our youth events at church people looked at me really strange that I could do this all on my own. I remember my DH and I offered to go cook on a one week trip with 20 young people and the church insisted on sending another couple to "make sure I wasn't in over my head". What the other couple found out was that I really DID love it, really DID find it easy and really DID a good job.

Stop trying to convince them that you love it. Just keep doing what you are doing. Maybe once or twice have some of these people actually come and "help" you. They will see for themselves that it is natural for you.

A lot of times that is just it - if a person isn't comfortable with doing something, it is hard for them to see that someone else would love it enough to "go overboard".
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Old 03-25-2008, 07:58 PM   #37
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When we started doing the videos, my friends and family immediately divided into two camps. The one that thinks I'm nuts for bothering, and the other that has recently begun asking for specific things to be done for the videos. lol. So I feel both sides of this debate. Everyone CAN cook, but not everyone WILL cook.
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Old 03-25-2008, 08:46 PM   #38
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When we started doing the videos, my friends and family immediately divided into two camps. The one that thinks I'm nuts for bothering, and the other that has recently begun asking for specific things to be done for the videos. lol. So I feel both sides of this debate. Everyone CAN cook, but not everyone WILL cook.
Touché! BTW, what kind of videos, Six?
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Old 03-25-2008, 09:43 PM   #39
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As someone who is married to a former schoolteacher now in administration, I have to say it's not "the schools" that focus on test scores - it's parents and politicians. They are the ones who demanded and passed the laws mandating practically constant testing - trust me, teachers don't like it. They went into teaching because they like *teaching*.

And school districts are not the ones who cut taxes to the point that many schools can no longer afford to offer "frills" like home ec, music, art and PE. Those subjects don't get tested, so they don't get taught. If your job depended on high test scores, you'd teach to the test, too.
Belive me garlic I know... my family is all teachers. I see my parents frustration first hand.

I had home ec and woodshop in 7th and 8th grade (late 80s) I dont think they offer it anymore. Certainly the HS does not. It is a shame especially since not all kids are college track. Being able to take a standardized test is probably less useful to them than knowing how to roast a chiken of change thier oil.

I currently live in a rather rough urban area. The long notorious HS in my neigborhood was recently re-structed into smaller "theme" based schools one of which is a culinary track. The students have been involved in catering community events and have participated in cultivating a herb garden on one of our many vacant lots. So far it seems to be a sucessful idea. The kids are learning something in addition to basic curriculm that may actually help them gain employment and becoming more engaged in the neighborhood. I am hopful for the success of this program as we have way too many youth here with no life skills and few prospects. if the culinary and othe programs help even a few of them broaden thier world view beyond the hood it will be a good thing.
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Old 03-25-2008, 09:50 PM   #40
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Belive me garlic I know... my family is all teachers. I see my parents frustration first hand.

I had home ec and woodshop in 7th and 8th grade (late 80s) I dont think they offer it anymore. Certainly the HS does not. It is a shame especially since not all kids are college track. Being able to take a standardized test is probably less useful to them than knowing how to roast a chiken of change thier oil.

I currently live in a rather rough urban area. The long notorious HS in my neigborhood was recently re-structed into smaller "theme" based schools one of which is a culinary track. The students have been involved in catering community events and have participated in cultivating a herb garden on one of our many vacant lots. So far it seems to be a sucessful idea. The kids are learning something in addition to basic curriculm that may actually help them gain employment and becoming more engaged in the neighborhood. I am hopful for the success of this program as we have way too many youth here with no life skills and few prospects. if the culinary and othe programs help even a few of them broaden thier world view beyond the hood it will be a good thing.
Thanks for sharing Pancho, we have a few of these types of schools up here in Canada, but way too few. And they are usually for the students who are "not acedemically inclined" so the students feel they are being treated as second class citizens instead of being given a better chance. I shouldn't sound like this is the norm here because it isn't. I just know of a few people who have felt that way and not come through the programs successfully.
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