TastEd is a new way of learning about food. Based on the Sapere method, successfully tried and tested in Sweden, Norway and part of the national curriculum in Finland, classes focus on using our senses to grow confidence with fresh ingredients, and learn about flavour. These are not lessons in cooking but lessons in eating, which are easy and rewarding for teachers to deliver. Studies from Finland suggest that this method is highly effective at increasing a child’s liking of fresh fruit and vegetables.
In TastEd lessons, children use all their senses to interact with food – smelling, touching, hearing and looking as well as tasting. Children are encouraged to use language to talk about what they are experiencing and are taught that no one has to like and no one has to try. Unlike some other lessons in healthy eating, TastEd is about helping a child build a positive relationship with food and their own bodies.
Aside from giving children a taste for healthy food, another key benefit is that TastEd is a highly effective and original way to get children to engage with the primary literacy curriculum, especially speaking and communication; when children are engaged by food, it inspires them to speak. The lessons work especially well with children who lack confidence in speaking and writing.