Before you begin your cooking adventure with your kids, here are a few tips to get your kids comfortable in the kitchen. These tips can help your kids become safe and responsible cooks. Once they become acclimated with the kitchen they will love to help and be involved.
Kids love to be creative. They love to feel a sense of accomplishment. Delegate detailed tasks to each child before you start the cooking process so each one knows what they will be responsible for. This will make the cooking process flow smoothly.
If the child is old enough, do not be tempted to criticize or take over. Give gentle reminders or instruction to help them continue learning.
Just as you would organize yourself before you cook, you will want to do the same thing with your kids. Being organized will help make cooking a fun and memorable experience. Plus, the kitchen will be less messy and easier to clean-up.
Cooking with your kids may lead to frustration, but remember to be patient. This is a learning process that might take time to develop.
It may take extra time to prepare the meal, but the benefits far out way the time it takes to clean up.
Before you begin cooking make the following preparations with your kids to ensure safely.
* Wear an apron to keep clothes clean.
* Tie back long hair so it does not get into the food.
* Roll up long sleeves. This will keep the sleeves from getting into the food.
* Wash hands with lots of soap and water. Continue washing especially after handling food like meats.
* Keep a damp towel or paper towels close for quick clean ups.
* Have hot pads ready for hot dishes. Even things taken out of the microwave can be extremely hot.
* Get out all the ingredients for the recipe. Let the kids help so they know where to find the common ingredients. Plus it helps the next time they need to get the same ingredient out. Put them on the counter to make sure you have all the ingredients you will need.
* Get all your kitchen appliances, cook wear, bowls and utensils out.
* If your child is not tall enough to reach the counter, get a stool for them to stand on.
* Teach them what to do in case of an emergency, such as if they burn themselves, or if the food catches fire. Also have a first aid kit on hand.
* Teach them how to handle sharp objects like knives and scissors. Once you use the knife or scissors, do not put them in the sink to soak. Instead, lay them on the counter in a secure place until you are ready to wash them.
Clean as you go
You do not want to have a huge mess when you are finished, so teach your children to clean as they go. Put the dirty pots and pans or bowls in the sink to soak. You could even have a child designated as the washer. Put away all the ingredients and equipment you have used to help clear space so you have an open and clean area to continue the cooking process.
Cooking with your kids can be a great experience. Have fun and enjoy the memories being made.