Date of Award


Document Type

Action Research Project

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education


Education, Montessori

First Advisor

Molly Wheeler


Montessori Elementary Education


The purpose of this research study was to explore the impact of multicultural culinary arts food preparation activities on food neophobia in the Montessori lower elementary classroom. The research study took place over three weeks in a public charter Montessori school, located in St. Louis, MO. Children ages 6-9 years old from one classroom participated in the study. The intervention strategy, based on Social Cognitive Theory, implemented key experience lessons, cosmic stories, and mindful eating strategies. Each food preparation activity lasted approximately 45 minutes and occurred three times a week during the study. The intervention demonstrated repeated exposure and involvement in food preparation activities helped to minimize food neophobia in lower elementary children. Further considerations include regular food preparation activities and classroom legacy projects, parent nutrition education workshops, and creating classroom cooking and eating traditions in lower elementary.