Being a child these days is not easy. It is even more difficult for children who are in middle grades. They are starting to come into their own and they are developing their own personalities. It is at this stage where children begin to decide on the things that they enjoy and the things they do not enjoy. This developmental phase can be a difficult one for both children and parents to manoeuvre through. How can you encourage your child’s newfound independent streak whilst at the same time making sure they stay safe? |
You can foster both by either enrolling your child into a cooking class or by teaching them the basics of the kitchen yourself. This will instantly increase your child’s confidence level and they will also gain some new kitchen skills too. After your child has started to learn some basic kitchen rules and some simple recipes they will have a voice in what weekly meals are served in the home. They will feel even more confident when they know that they can actually help prepare those meals.
So how can you make sure that this journey will be a successful one for you and your child? There are several basic skills that your child can learn that will boost their eagerness to get into the kitchen.
The Kitchen Basics Your Child May Already Be Familiar With
If your child has been helping you in the kitchen for some time now there are probably skills that you have already taught them or things they have learned from watching you. When a child reaches the ages of 7 and 9 they are ready to add some new skills to their little mental cookbook of knowledge.
Introduce them to a slightly sharper knife if they have always used a butter knife in the kitchen. You do not want to upgrade them to a steak knife or butcher knife. A sharp knife with a round or dull tip will work perfectly.
You should also monitor your child’s maturity level to determine if they are truly ready to upgrade their kitchen talents. Once they have proved themselves capable of handling larger cooking jobs you can assist them with:
• Grating cheese
• Using the blender
• Cutting objects with the slightly sharper knife
There are several additional skills that you can teach your grade school child that will increase their self confidence in the kitchen.
Basic Safety Rules
Adults who have long hair should always keep their hair pinned up whilst in the kitchen and you should also teach this same rule to your child. They should also learn to use a potholder or a mitt when touching hot objects.
Allow Your Child to Plan a Weekly Meal
It is best to allow them to choose a weekend meal to prepare so you will have the time to assist them in the kitchen without being tired after a long workday. Give your child the freedom to choose the type of meal that they want to serve but set certain rules like no junk food.
Building your child’s confidence through cooking can encourage them to accomplish other goals and strengthen their maturity level.
Laura Ginn believes that a kids cooking school is a great way to bridge educational and culinary skills in a young child.
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