In the article “Time to Revive Home Ec” by Helen Zoe Veit, she starts by stating the
common belief why home economics was out dated. The article continues to explain how home
economics came to be. Back in the day when this started was a time when the belief that women
needed to know home related activities in order to be successful. The first classes were created in
agricultural and technical colleges that were made from federal grants in the 1860‘s. The Smith-
Hughes Act of1917 provided support for the training of teachers in home economics for classes
in elementary, middle and high schools across the country.
The new home economic classes offered women a way into teaching at the university
level because few people were aware of germ theory, the importance of vitamins and the
necessity of eating fruit and vegetables daily. These lessons later became more like common
sense, but the other things they taught like cooking were put aside and not taught to any
The article continues to explain that most Americans do not know how to cook and
take on a diet of high processed foods. This is what has led to the obesity problem in America.
Veit continues to go on about her personal brush with home economics class in America and
how the teaching in Wales about home economics was applicable after high school. She
mentioned her first run with home economics in America as getting prepackaged dough and
sticking it in a fryer to make doughnuts. In Wales, Veit was taught to prepare healthy
meals from scratch. She then comments on the importance of home economics and how in
America it would be a good way to prevent obesity.
As I read this article I could not help but to agree. I was not aware of how home
economics classes came to be or the reason behind these classes. It was interesting to me that...