Five Ways To Get Children Involved In Cooking This Summer!
It’s officially summer and school is out for many children! It is a perfect time to spend some quality time with your kids by sharing your love and passion for cooking or baking. Cooking with your children can help them practice their math and reading skills, learn about nutrition and hygiene, and be exposed to some of the basics of cooking. Share grandma’s secret family recipe or even ask them what they’d like to make! Here are five easy tips on how to get your children involved in the kitchen while they are home this summer.
- Read The Recipe and Prepare Ingredients
Now that you have chosen your recipe, you can start prepping the ingredients. You can allow your children to gather all the specific ingredients from the refridgerator and cabinets. Ask them to wash any fruits and vegetables. This is where you can teach some techniques such as chopping, dicing or mincing. (Always make sure to reinforce knife safety before you plan on using real knives). You can have your kids start to cut soft foods like berries, lettuce, peppers, and or even grate cheese by using either a plastic knife or butter knife.
- Measuring and Mixing
Now that your ingredients are all gathered and organized, you can start teaching your children about measuring with cups, tablespoons, etc. Allow them to practice counting and mixing ingredients in a bowl. Let them stir the ingredients and sprinkle all the spices and seasonings. This is also a great time to teach them how to crack or separate an egg (if the recipe calls for it).
- Setting and Serving
While you are waiting for your recipe to cook or bake, you can have them set the timer and ask for updates on how much of the cooking or baking time is left. Children can help set the table with silverware, napkins, and cups. They can learn about matching the proper utensils for the different types of foods being prepared.
- Clean Up
This may not be yours or your kids’ favorite part of the cooking process, but it can be possibly done while waiting for your dish to cook or bake. Try and make cleaning fun – with a lot of praise and reinforcement – because it can get very messy with children in the kitchen.
Establish a set of rules for your kitchen that can easily be followed. Depending on age or level of maturity dangerous kitchen items such as knives, kitchen scissors, matches and food processors should be kept out of reach and should be supervised whenever in use.
Teaching your children to cook is a skill that they can use forever. The younger they start, the better. By eating well and healthy as a child, the more likely they are to eat healthy when they grow up. There are too many reasons to plan a fun-filled family cooking night as a way to spend quality time with your kids. Share your passion for food!
If you ever considered pursuing a career in the culinary industry, consider Dorsey Schools’ Culinary Arts diploma program. Dorsey Schools provides perfectly balanced career training. The program is designed to give you a hands-on industry specific experience. Learn more about the program here.
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