July 2, 2012

Madelyn Monroe (foreground) joins other students in the kitchen on campus for a Cooking 101 Kids College Class at Northeastern Junior College. Instructors Calvin Lee (center) and Ryan Virgil (left) take time to give the students instruction on how to properly use the burners as they prepare to cook French Toast.

Madelyn Monroe (foreground) joins other students in the kitchen on campus for a Cooking 101 Kids College Class at Northeastern Junior College. Instructors Calvin Lee (center) and Ryan Virgil (left) take time to give the students instruction on how to properly use the burners as they prepare to cook French Toast. (Courtesy Photo)

“Is this the flipper-ma-jigg I use to turn it?” asks soon to be 11 year-old Madelyn Monroe of Fleming, directing her question to Calvin Lee. She and nine other youngsters are set up in the big kitchen at Northeastern Junior College to take the Cooking 101 Kids College Class taught this week on campus. Monroe is holding a spatula. Lee chuckles, but is also quick to tell her it is a “spatula”, not a “flipper-ma-jigg.” 

This class was for students in grades fifth through seventh. Among the skills they learned during the two hour class were how to make perfect French toast. This of course involved working with a pan on a lit burner. Lee, who directs Sodexo food services on campus, assisted by Sodexo Chef Ryan Virgil , were not only teaching about cooking, but also sharing special tips on safety in the kitchen. Some of the students in this group were from Sterling, Fleming, Merino and even as far away as Aurora. One student said she was here visiting for the summer. The Extended Studies Department at NJC has offered a full array of classes for youngsters this summer, most all of them held during June. Two classes will be held in July.

Jeff Schiel will teach CSI Investigators July 16-18 for grades fourth through eighth.  During this class, students will do a criminal investigation, exploring and evaluating a crime scene during which time they will learn about forensic anthropology by doing a mock criminal investigation. Students will actually step on the crime scene and dig up evidence. Schiel, who helps with some of the criminal justice courses at NJC, has done similar exercises with college age students, including the 2011 Pig Dig. Cost of this class is $20.

Christi Fitzpatrick will teach Junk Drawer Robotics July 23-26th for grades sixth, seventh and eighth. During this class, students will discover what a marshmallow catapult and a can-can bot can teach you about robotics.  Using materials found around the house and garage, students will design a series of projects that demonstrate many of the basics of robotics. They will explore robotic movement, electronics and sensors all the while engineering a design and testing the  creation. This program is made possible through a partnership with CSU Extension. Cost is $20 per student.

To check availability of openings for these last two classes, or to get on the mailing list for next year’s Kids College enrollment, contact the Extended Studies office at 521-6900.