Kids Can Help In The Kitchen At Any Age

Children learn by touching, tasting, feeling, smelling, and listening.
They love to help prepare food and cook because they can use all their senses. Children like to eat the foods they make. Plan ways the children in your care can help you. Be sure to consider the age of the child.

Of course babies can’t cook yet, but they will enjoy being with you and experience the sights, sounds, and smells of the kitchen.
• Talk about what you are doing as you move around the kitchen.
• When babies begin to crawl, they’re safest in a high chair in the kitchen.
• Talk about and name cooking utensils and foods.
• Talk about what they like to eat.
• Give babies a separate bowl and spoon and let them mix foods that are safe for them to eat.

Two-year-olds are learning to use the large muscles in their arms. They will enjoy these activities:
• scrubbing vegetables and fruits
• dipping vegetables and fruits
• tearing lettuce and salad greens
• breaking bread for stuffing
• snapping fresh beans
• wiping tables

Three-year-olds are learning to use their hands. Try these activities:
• pouring liquids into a batter
• mixing muffin batter
• shaking a milk drink
• spreading peanut butter on firm bread (This may be messy!)
• kneading bread dough

Four- and five-year-olds are learning to control smaller muscles in their fingers. Offer them experiences such as these:
• rolling bananas in cereal for a snack
• juicing oranges, lemons, and limes
• mashing soft fruits and vegetables
• measuring dry and liquid ingredients
• grinding cooked meat for meat spread
• beating eggs with an eggbeater

Reader Question: What do/did your kids do to help in the kitchen?

8 Responses to “Kids Can Help In The Kitchen At Any Age”

Read below or add a comment...

  1. Anne Thomas says:

    Mine is a little older now, but I think we started with cookie dough shaping, since it’s fun and everyone loves cookies!
    Anne Thomas recently posted..February Recipes and Specials from Anne ThomasMy Profile

  2. Liz says:

    This all sounds good except “grinding cooked meat for meat spread”. I’m not sure a child that young should be operating anything that grinds.

  3. (e)CLAU says:

    buying ingredients, measuring, beating eggs
    (e)CLAU recently posted..Randy Gage Demo Video 2012 (by randygage)My Profile

  4. Joanne says:

    Liz….my daughter was cutting her meat with knives at that age. As long as a parent is with them, kids are capable of doing a lot more than people give them credit for. :-)

  5. At0mic says:

    my kids helped making pies and pastry, mixing and then rolling the pastry, and then making Pizza from scratch, all that kind of stuff, they did it from an early age

  6. We started out when the kids were young by making some things that we saw on the Food Network. Breaking eggs, mixing in bowls, cookies. Now my nephew is a gourmet cook at home!

  7. Have no kids, but i guess kids can help in the kitchen with many things.
    Erik Van Erne recently posted..TEDxSalzburg: Create Your Own Change by Dietmar DahmenMy Profile

  8. last baby boomer says:

    I use to help my Mother in the kitchen. Now I do all the cooking in my home. Cook mostly the same dishes as well,but not as well.

Leave A Comment...


CommentLuv badge