The diverse team of instructors at Key Element Learning are serious about catering to each of their students' unique interests, strengths, and needs, whether they're still in diapers or entering middle school. That's why their educational programs are so eclectic?the classes range from academic subjects such as reading and science to the more creative topics of art and cooking to ensure kids will find a class to spark their curiosity. In order to give students the best lessons possible, they also pull from popular, time-honored educational franchises such as The Language Workshop for Children, where native speakers immerse children in foreign languages through games, songs, and colorful visual aids.
Meredith Chartier developed a love for cooking as a young girl, helping her mother, aunt, and grandmother prepare family meals. This passion stayed with her, even as she went on to become an elementary school teacher. After 10 years of teaching, Meredith's good friend––a pastry chef by trade––offered her the opportunity to create the savory portion of a sweet-and-savory soiree for a client. In doing so, Meredith discovered that cooking was truly what she wanted to do for a living, and less than a year later she launched Bellamy Kitchen.
As the chef behind Bellamy Kitchen, Meredith puts her teaching skills to use designing lesson plans for in-home cooking courses. She also builds menus for catered events and helps people organize their kitchens. She does it all with an eye toward sustainability, getting her produce from the local Catalpa Ridge Farm, composting all food waste, and using packaging that can be recycled or at least turned into a cool hat.
A recurring guest on Martha Stewart Living radio, Simon Feil has not only been a self-described "chef by osmosis his entire life," but an actor and educator who shares his passion with amateur cooks. Feil and his team of chefs teach prospective sushi rollers to craft their own maki in group classes, private lessons, and sometimes even at students? homes. Whether they're teaching individuals or corporate clients, chefs guide their charges through each step to creating platefuls of savory seafood. The variety of classes?which even includes a lesson geared toward pregnant sushi fans?encompasses many different levels of cooking experience and fish-whispering ability. Gift baskets, available for an additional fee, help outfit customers with their own maki-making gear.
Cook & Go?s chefs step out from their hidden kitchens and teach participants the skills necessary to prepare, cook, and serve a variety of quality three-course meals. Each meal centers on a theme such as Peruvian cuisine and light and tasty eats. Preparing each dish under the watchful eye of their instructor, participants then take the cooked meal home, heat if necessary, and serve. During each session, participants earn badges called COOKS, which denote mastery of a certain vital kitchen skill, such as chopping, dicing, or mincing. The New York location represents Cook & Go?s first foray on American soil, though it already boasts 14 successful locations throughout France.
Calling chef Daphne Cheng "inventive" is a bit of an understatement. Before each dinner service, she travels to the market that day to pick up seasonal vegetables. And when she gets back to the kitchen, she throws together tasty, vibrant dishes without following a recipe. She's even created a unique venue to showcase her culinary skills—Suite Threeohsix.
The vegetable-focused fine-dining supper club in a Tribeca loft gathers together a maximum of 16 diners for dinner several times a month. Guests sip wine and mingle with strangers while watching Cheng cook behind a glass wall. The intimate dinners routinely sell out, according to an article in Well+Good, which called Cheng's food "inventive, beautiful, and delicious." But that's not surprising for a chef who has listed clients such as Vera Wang, Alec Baldwin, and Lea Michele on her resume.
Cheng also uses her Suite Threeohsix space to host cooking classes, where she teaches students everything from knife basics to gluten-free baking. For her students who come with absolutely no cooking knowledge, her How to Boil Water class explains which angle to hold the magnifying glass against the kitchen window.