Posted on January 7, 2018
Did you ever consider all the lessons kids can learn in the kitchen, which can benefit them both at home and at school? Here’s why I believe ALL school-age kids should join their moms and dad in the kitchen.
Kids are receptive to conversations about nutrition. Planning a menu is an opportunity to explain smart food choices. Take the time to discuss the different food groups and encourage kids to experiment with foods.
I can tell you with certainty, using my own daughter as an example when she was just a little kid, a child who has a hand in making the vegetables will be a little more willing to sample them at the table!
Grandma’s secret zucchini bread recipe can be your chance to pass on a little bit of family history. Did you love peanut butter and banana sandwiches when you were 8? Tell your child about the foods you liked as a kid.
The kitchen is also a great place to ask thought-provoking questions of your child such as, “To make a really colorful dinner, which foods would you include?”
Kids learn to follow the steps in recipe directions, how to safely handle kitchen items (with reminders along the way!), to put things back where they belong, to clean up spills as they happen as well as to clean up after themselves when the project is completed.
As your child learns to crack eggs and stir sauce, he or she is also gaining new science, language, and math skills.
Basic math skills (“Are we putting in more salt or baking soda?” . . . and
Sequencing skills (“What’s first? next? last?”) . . . give way to
Fractions (“Is this 3/4 of a cup?”)
Reading recipes can improve reading comprehension, and something as simple as salt sprinkled on an ice cube demonstrates basic science principles.
Childhood obesity is a raging epidemic. The key to warding that off for your own children is encouraging a healthy eating lifestyle (which is good for you as well!). Having your kids in the kitchen will make it fun for you both and, importantly, put them on a good track for slimness, wellness, fitness and happiness.