Olney Trains ‘Kids in the Kitchen’
Story by Debra Anderson
Prior to COVID-19, 25 students, ages 8–13, from Potomac Conference's Olney Adventist Preparatory School (Md.) and the Olney (Md.) church enrolled in a cooking class to help develop their culinary skills. The children were excited to learn the basics of food preparation while fixing healthy meals and discovering new foods. COVID-19, however, forced the cooking class to be held via Zoom for a year. Still, the students did not lose their enthusiasm. They continued to meet every month, concocting new dishes to share with their family and friends.
As a final end-of-year celebration, school administrators held a “Kids in the Kitchen” contest. Fourth-grader Lukas McLean and seventh-grader Illiana Simons won first prize in their respective age groups.
“I’m really glad that I was able to participate in this competition,” says McLean. “I am grateful for my mother who practiced with me beforehand. ... Even though being a professional chef is not my goal, I do enjoy cooking, and it’s a hobby I really like.”
Simons says, “The competition tested my skills and creativity. I learned some new flavor combinations to help improve my cooking. It was also fun trying my friends’ recipes. Winning was great, but the experience itself was the most rewarding.”