Rebecca Berry, mom of a 2nd-grade student at Lakeridge Elementary and an active member with the school’s Community and Family Engagement as well as with RIZP’s Action Team, has finished a collaboration with her schools’ families to create a community cookbook!

Next month, the cookbook, titled, the Lakeridge Community Family Cookbook ‚Äčis scheduled to be printed and provided to about 400 families and students who attend the elementary school. With the help of the school for

editing and printing costs, Rebecca is excited for the cookbook’s release.

The cookbook began as a community project while she attended the Parent Leader Training Institute (PLTI) with the Washington State Family Community and Engagement Trust (WAFCET) at Everett Community College. Here, parents have access to free training that consists of an 11-week civic engagement program that teaches them to become leading advocates for children in their schools and communities.

When determining her community project, without hesitation Rebecca thought of her daughter’s school and the encouraging feeling of connecting with families their Parent Potluck night; building on this successful event, the Lakeridge Community Family Cookbook was born!

The objective of the cookbook is to hopefully bring together a community of diverse families and create a sense of connectedness. Through the celebration of food and great conversations, Rebecca hopes to capture and share the different traditions and cultures of the families that resided in her community.

It also was a wonderful process creating this cookbook, as Rebecca shared she had the opportunity to connect and work cross-functionally with parents, families and Lakeridge students. As recipes were collected, some included a short narrative that provided family context and the culture behind the specific dish that would be prepared. From marketing to advertisement, to creating short videos and utilizing a private Facebook page, Rebecca worked hard and diligently to complete the 41-recipe community cookbook.

Pointing towards the future, Rebecca has many ideas on how we can continue to expand this cookbook and use it as a tool to connect our families with our schools’ learning culture. One idea, for example, is to expand to encourage the benefits of bringing our students into the practice of preparing meals and including grade specific math connections to purchasing and measuring ingredients and also, possibly expanding the cookbook to all RIZ schools. Overall, she hopes to encourage families to feel a little more connected to each other and to their school community.  

The Lakeridge Community Family Cookbook Recipe Highlights Include:

  • Lakeridge families’ favorite recipes including appetizers, breads, sides, and entrees from around the world!
  • An appendix that includes a cultural context to holidays and celebrations referenced in recipes
  • An introduction to the Renton Innovation Zone Partnership (RIZP) as well as Lakeridge’s Family and Community Engagement (FACE) team work in the community
  • Recipes from community leaders including, Renton School District (RSD) Superintendent, Dr. Damien Pattenaude, RSD’s Cherryl Jackson Williams, and Lakeridge Principal Holly Megan Thompson
  • Outreach Videos