Teaching in the Kitchen is not only easy to do – it’s fun and rewarding! A lot of what we forget is when we’re educating our children is we’re also teaching them life skills. Teaching in the kitchen is a great way to incorporate life skills in their learning! The best part is most kids are excited and eager to learn and help in the kitchen!
But what about when you have young children like ours? Our kids are only ages 6, 5, and 2. There can’t possibly be much they can do in the kitchen, can there? Absolutely! They may not be able to help with things like actually putting something in the oven or cutting things, etc., but there are still plenty of things they CAN do and learn! In fact, at one point I had even randomly found little activity sheets with games to go along with a recipe. I wish I could tell you where I found it or what it was called, but unfortunately it disappeared – something that isn’t uncommon in this house! Regardless, they are activities you could definitely put together yourself. There are a wealth of free printables on the internet you could download to go along with whatever you may be learning in the kitchen!
Here are some ideas for little ones to learn in the kitchen:
- Baking. Baking is always a fun project for younger kids. They get to experiment with textures, motor skills such as rolling dough, using cookie cutters, etc. Whatever it may be. Allow them to add ingredients while discussing measurements and comparing different measuring tools. Explain what each ingredient is and what it does.
- Decorating. It may not look as “pretty” when kids decorate, but it helps them learn independence by allowing them to choose how to decorate. Plus decorating is an art!
- Water Play. There is so much you can do with water. You can add things to water, freeze water, boil water, etc. with some amazing results. The possibilities are endless!
- Health and Nutrition. Younger kids may have a harder time grasping the more in depth concepts of health and nutrition, but they can surely understand when you put things in basic terms such as: this is healthy, which means it’s good for you and your body. Talk about eating well-balanced meals and why you choose specific items for meals.
- Games. As I mentioned, you can use printables or make up games for times when you are working on a project that takes a while. You can talk more about what you are making while it bakes or cooks and do coloring projects or games related to your project!
- Coordination and motor skills. This may be something we focus a little more on because our kids have special needs, but it is still an important life skill. Don’t be afraid to let your children try things like pouring their own drink, mixing things, scooping things from the pan to a plate. Yes, it can be messy, but the only way they can learn these skills is by doing! So don’t be afraid to let them!
- Senses. There is not many places better than the kitchen to learn about the senses. You have different sounds, smells, tastes, textures, and sights. The kitchen is the PERFECT place to learn and talk about the senses! Don’t miss out on all those wonderful opportunities!
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Be sure to check out the other great Schooling in the Kitchen posts below!