LittleCooks – Central Auckland

About Us

Founded in 2011, LittleCooks has been teaching kids cooking throughout the Auckland area. Founding Director, Suzi was diagnosed with Coeliac disease in 2007 and ever since has felt passionate about teaching kids cooking in order to educate them about food choices and knowing what goes into the food they eat!

LittleCooks has been at several schools doing after school classes, but also have been involved with schools / organisations like the Special Needs department at Takapuna Grammar School, Westminster Christian School, Wilson Home Trust, HomeSchool NZ, Albany Community Hub, YMCA, the Great NZ Food Show, The Chocolate and Coffee Show and the Korean Consulate – running Korean Cooking Classes during their annual festival.

LittleCooks run events such as interactive cooking demonstrations at the 2018 Great NZ Food Show in Hamilton, or cupcake decorating at private events.

We have a team of dedicated staff who teach the after school classes, and are trained either as a chef or have a special talent in creating food and sharing it with children. We make all our classes fun by having the kids work in groups, creating leadership within, but also strengthening maths, motor, and reading skills, not to mention confidence! These are life skills that teach more than just cooking. We get feedback all the time about how children are now trying new foods at home, are helping out in the kitchen because they’ve gained the skills and confidence to do just that. Parents overwhelm us regularly with stories about how their child overcame their fussy eating habits by learning to cook with LittleCooks.

Fostering a love of cooking

Children work in a group to read the recipe, gather and measure ingredients and cook the meal together. This in itself is a special experience as it teaches teamwork as well as reinforcing a sense of community and respect for others while they divide up tasks and responsibilities. Over the hour long session after school sessions, the children are often experiencing brand new flavours and at the end produce something that they have created themselves – which instils a huge sense of pride in a child.

This whole process encourages socialisation, but also is pure fun as it’s not academic or competitive and the best part is – they get to eat food at the end of the session, or more often times than not, share it with their parent!

Catering towards any needs

LittleCooks loves teaching the joy of cooking to everyone – including kids who have difficulty with fine motor skills. We’ve run holiday workshops at Wilson Home Trust and regularly teach a group of Special Needs kids at Takapuna Grammar. Cooking itself can be such a wonderful learning experience.  There are so many life skills involved that can help children/ teens learn how to cook on their own.  Shopping for the ingredients, looking at labels, budgeting, getting equipment ready, prepping the ingredients, etc.  And we haven’t even started cooking yet!

Cooking in a group is such a lovely activity when you have kids working together to create something special they can eat together. Reading, counting, measuring, cutting, grating, slicing, boiling, frying and learning about different foods and flavours; these are all skills practised while cooking.  Working on improving fine motor skills and thinking through to the end product is such a life skill which special needs students need not miss out on!

Physical environment

We can travel. We set up in school halls, or school staff rooms, bringing all the equipment with us. We use food technology rooms where we can, but are equally comfortable working at tables set up in a Hockey Pavilion, for example. Each table holds all the equipment for one group of 4 and the class holds a maximum of 16 kids who share all the ingredients. Safety is our main priority with one LittleCooks team member and 2 helpers, all trained in kitchen safety and food hygiene.

Atmosphere

We foster a supportive, caring and fun environment while the kids are cooking together. We encourage kids to get creative with their food – making food into different shapes, or using herbs and other leftover ingredients to put a face on a pile of home-made baked beans, for example.

We know that kids engagement increases when they’re having fun and using their hands– so we love to see them getting creative. We also love to sit down at the end of a session and eat the food together!

 

Our mission is to teach kids the fundamental life skill of cooking. We do this by combining an opportunity to learn the basics in a group setting while providing a safe yet fun environment.

Services

Cooking classes for kids
Specialised/customised programmes
Private small group or one on one sessions in your home
Birthday parties
Holiday workshops
Gluten free cooking classes

This is a mobile service.

Services

Cooking classes for kids
Specialised/customised programmes
Private small group or one on one sessions in your home
Birthday parties
Holiday workshops
Gluten free cooking classes

“By the way, the ravioli was out of this world! I had leftovers for lunch at work the next day and they were superb, my boys love coming to cooking.”

“The girls love LittleCooks and it’s fantastic for them to learn about the various food values and healthy choices.”

“My daughter apparently can’t live without her Friday afternoon cooking class! Congratulations to you for creating such a wonderful and engaging course!”

“My son is now chief scrambled eggs maker in our house and did a great job of making my entire Mother’s Day breakfast. Thanks to LittleCooks, my son’s confidence in the kitchen has sky rocketed. Before starting at LittleCooks my son would very rarely venture into the kitchen, but he now has the skills and confidence to make basic meals from scratch, and is keen to help me prep our family meals. He even makes his own meals on nights where we have numerous activities meaning one less mouth to feed! LittleCooks has also extended his knowledge of different foods to the point where he is keen to try new foods (not always with success but at least he tries them!), has helped my son understand measurements, food health and safety, and more importantly has helped him make new friends.”