We’re strong believers at Easy Budget Recipes that if you get your kids involved in making food, then they will be more likely to try the food that is served to them. This will eventually lead to them learning to like new foods!
How to Get the Kids Involved in Cooking:
Each and every recipe post will have a section that is devoted to how you can get kids involved in the recipe with simple suggestions. It is broken down by the following age groups:
- Ages 2-3
- Ages 4-5
- Ages 6-8
- Ages 9-11
- Ages 12+
If you haven’t gotten your kids involved in the kitchen before, that’s ok! We suggest bumping back 1 or 2 age groups and following the suggestions there. Additionally we have found that, having your kids watch and listen to you explain the different steps for older age groups is valuable in building their kitchen know-how and kitchen confidence! Which, let’s face it, are essential life skills!
Cooking helps your Kids in School!
Pardon me while I geek out for a minute here. Before having kids and starting recipe websites, I was a teacher for 7 years. Teaching is one of my passions, and I love when life gives me the opportunity to scratch my teaching itch. Below you will find explanations on how cooking with your kids builds reading fluency, builds vocabulary, teaches math, and technical writing, too. And don’t even get me started on the endless amounts of science experiments you could do when it comes to baking, because baking is chemistry after all!
Following Recipes can build Reading Fluency
Another fun perk of having your kids help in the kitchen is that it builds their reading fluency. Let me explain. For younger readers, I read them the recipe once while pointing to each word as they follow along. Then, I do the same as we prepare the recipe. This small little technique will help them build their reading fluency.
For older kids, have them read the entire recipe, TWICE, before even beginning. This helps them mentally prepare for the different recipe steps, gives them an opportunity to ask questions, and it builds reading fluency! And guess what? By doing this, they will actually read the recipe for a total of 3 times!
I don’t know about you, but my kids have to read for at least 20 minutes every night, or read to themselves for that long, if not longer. Using our method of getting kids to help you prepare our recipes will kill 2 birds with one stone:
- It will help them get their reading homework done.
- It will help you get dinner on the table!
Cooking Builds Vocabulary, Teaches Math, and Technical Writing
- While reading recipes, kids will be exposed to vocabulary that they wouldn’t have encountered elsewhere like, proofing, baste, deglaze, emulsify, and hull to name a few.
- Cooking also teaches Math. My 9-year-old learned fractions and adding fractions long before she was exposed to them in school just by cooking with me.
- Technical Writing is something that I would teach my 4th graders. This is also something that they would struggle with because they would leave out crucial steps or wouldn’t know how to transition properly. Well, guess what? Reading recipes will totally help with that!
Priceless, Sweet Moments…and some messy ones, too
Lastly, I cannot tell you how priceless the simple sweet moments are that I have had while cooking in the kitchen with my kids. (Don’t get me wrong, there are definitely challenges. Remind me to tell you about getting a face full of butter, sugar, egg, and flour when my little guy turned the stand mixer on full blast). For the most part, cooking together is often a fun-filled session of talking, explaining cooking techniques, teaching kitchen and cooking safety, instilling valuable life skills, and creating memories that will last a lifetime.