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close this bookAppropriate Community Technology - A Training Manual (Peace Corps; 1982; 685 pages)
View the documentThe Farallones Institute Rural Center
View the documentCHP International, INC.
View the documentPreface
View the documentAcknowledgments
View the documentIntroduction
Open this folder and view contentsPhase I: Introduction to training
close this folderPhase II: Earthen construction and fuel-saving cookstoves
View the documentPhase II Calendar
View the documentSession 1. Environmental health and sanitation
View the documentSession 2. Traditional methods of cooking: an introduction to cookstove technologies
View the documentSession 3. Fuel-saying cookstoves: gathering information
View the documentSession 4. Cookstove design and innovations
View the documentSession 5. Thinking in pictures: introduction to design drawing
View the documentSession 6. Introduction to independent study
View the documentSession 7. Cookstove operation function and design principles
View the documentSession 8. Understanding the cookstove design process and soil mixes
View the documentSession 9. Insolation meter construction
View the documentSession 10. Cookstove construction
View the documentSession 11. Nature of volunteerism: expectations beyond training
View the documentSession 12. Food issues
View the documentSession 13. The role of the volunteer in development: definition of appropriate technology
View the documentSession 14. Stove promotion and dissemination
View the documentSession 15. Explaining completed cookstoves
View the documentSession 16. Evaluating cookstove efficiency
View the documentSession 17. Diagnosing and repairing malfunctioning cookstoves
View the documentSession 18. Other responses to fuel scarcity
View the documentSession 19. Charcoal production and stoves
View the documentSession 20. Custom and food
View the documentSession 21. Design and construction of the second stove part one: stove base
View the documentSession 22. Alternative cookstoves: presentations
View the documentSession 23. Basic nutrition
View the documentSession 24. Cookstove operation
View the documentSession 25. Cookstove development and innovation
View the documentSession 26. Cookstove information and resources/ evaluation of cookstove training
Open this folder and view contentsPhase III: Pedal/treadle power
Open this folder and view contentsPhase IV: Solar water heaters
Open this folder and view contentsPhase V: Solar agricultural dryers
Open this folder and view contentsPhase VI: Concluding the program: The energy fair
Open this folder and view contentsAppendices

Session 24. Cookstove operation


Total time:

4 hours


* To plan a nutritionally balanced and culturally appropriate meal
* To prepare the meal on a sand/clay cookstove
* To demonstrate the process to others


* Jelliffe, Child Nutrition in Developing Countries, pp. 24-41
* Paley, Gardening for Better Nutrition, pp. 26-27
* Robertson, Flinders, Godfrey, Laurel's Kitchen
* Attachment II-24/1, "Evaluation of Cooking Exercise"


Sand/clay cookstoves (ready for firing), cook kits for each stove (pots, pans, cooking and eating utensils, pot holders), kindling, firewood, machetes, baking soda, water (in case of fire), foods as needed

Trainer Notes

This session will require considerable preparation. You will need to set up food stocks for the cooking activity and devise a food list with the cost of each food item (see Trainer Notes, Step 2) Read the session carefully before beginning.


Step 1. (5 minutes)
Present the session objectives and outline the activities.

Step 2. (15 minutes)
Give a brief talk on tropical foods. Invite comments.

Trainer Notes

Refer to Jelliffe for information.

Step 3. (15 minutes)
Give a brief talk on nutrition and cooking, inviting comments and discussion.

Trainer Notes

* Discuss information about the preservation of nutrients in cooking and the benefit of using cast-iron cookware.

* Refer to Laurel's Kitchen and to Paley for more information.

Step 4. (10 minutes)
Distribute and explain the food lists and costs to the participants.

Trainer Notes

Select foods that are specific to areas in which participants will be working as Peace Corps Volunteers.

Step 5. (30 minutes)
Have the participants form cooking groups and plan the meals they will be preparing.

Trainer Notes

Explain that this is a good opportunity for participants to practice planning culturally appropriate menus and cooking with foods that are common in the countries in which they will be serving.

To encourage low-cost menu planning, set a cost limit per person.

Have the groups plan their menu activity such that:

* All group members participate in all phases of planning, purchasing, preparing and demonstrating the meal.

* Appropriate technology devices are used and there is not a strong dependence on modern equipment.

* The meal is nutritionally balanced (See Phase II: Session 23, "Basic Nutrition," for more information).

Step 6. (20 minutes)
Have the groups purchase the foods they will need.

Trainer Notes

* Set up a role-play situation in which participants use their food item cost lists to "purchase" foods from staff members acting in the role of local market vendors.

* If a real local market is nearby, have the participants go there to purchase their foods.

* If there is an available garden, the participants should harvest their vegetable and herb needs, rather than purchase them.

Step 7. (1 hour, 20 minutes)
Have the participants prepare their meals using a sand/clay cookstove.

Step 8. (30 minutes)
When the meals are ready, have each group give a cooking demonstration, allowing the other groups to taste the food they have prepared.

Trainer Notes

Explain that each demonstration should:

* Describe how the stove works
* Describe the meal and its nutritional qualities
* Describe how the food was prepared and cooked to maintain nutritional value

Encourage each group to use non-technical language and non-formal education techniques in its demonstration.

Step 9. (20 minutes)
Distribute Attachment II 24/1, "Evaluation of Cooking Exercise," to each group and have them complete it.

Step 10. (15 minutes)
Have participants clean the work site.


Answer the following questions in your cooking groups. Analyze the group process and the type of food prepared. The answers should be written as a group and given to the trainers.

1. How were the tasks divided? Who did what?

2. Did all group members participate fully? If not, why (what impeded cooperative effort)?

3. What food was cooked? What was the recipe?

4. What was the nutritional value of the food? What nutritional needs did the food satisfy? If there were sources of protein, were they complementary? (Illustrate.)

5. Did the food taste and look appetizing? If not, what could be done to improve flavor and appearance? Would you use this recipe again?

6. What appropriate technology devices were used in the preparation? Were they appropriate for the tasks? How could preparation have been more low-tech or appropriate or more efficient?

7. What would you tell others attempting to do the same job to make it flow more easily or better?

8. Were the devices used for food preparation potentially useful and suitable for application during Peace Corps service? Are they potentially appropriate for use by all members of a community, including women and children? Explain your answers.

9. Did you notice any implications for health during the use of the appropriate technology devices? Please state any observations.


Total time:

1 hour


* To identify and discuss advantages and disadvantages of cooking with an improved sand/clay cookstove
* To discuss ways to overcome the disadvantages
* To identify and discuss ways to conserve cookstove fuel


* Evans and Boutette, Lorena Stoves, pp. 71-72, 74-75
* Jenquier, Appropriate Technology Problems and Promises, Chapter II, "The Innovative System in Appropriate Technology, pp. 27-40


Newsprint and felt-tip pens


Step 1. (5 minutes)
Review the session objectives and activities.

Step 2. (20 minutes)
Have the participants identify and discuss a list of advantages and disadvantages of cooking with improved sand/clay cookstoves.

Trainer Notes

Record their responses in two columns on posted newsprint.

Step 3. (15 minutes)
Discuss ways in which each of the disadvantages might be overcome.

Trainer Notes

For those disadvantages which relate to stove malfunctions, refer to pages of Lorena Stoves.

Step 4. (15 minutes)
Have the participants identify and discuss ways of conserving the amount of fuel used in the cookstoves.

Trainer Notes

For detailed information regarding the points that should be covered in this discussion, see pages of Lorena Stoves.

Step 5. (5 minutes)
Assign Chapter II, "The Innovative System in Appropriate Technology," from Appropriate Technology: Problems and Promises, and explain that it should be read before the next cookstove session.

Trainer Notes

The next cookstove session (Phase II: Session 25) requires a participant volunteer to facilitate a discussion of the above reading assignment.

Select that participant/facilitator at this time. Review the activities in Session 25 with him/her, paying special attention to the Trainer Notes under Step 2. Give the participant/ facilitator a copy of the following questions for discussion:

* What were some of the important issues raised in the reading?
* What does the statement "appropriate technology is community technology" mean?
* How would you go about verifying that your perceptions of a villagers needs correspond with the felt needs of villagers?

Explain that these discussion questions should be used as guidelines for the up-coming discussion.

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