Saturday, May 9, 2009

Get Kids Involved in Food Preparation

There are so many benefits in getting the kids involved in food preparation, we don't even know where to begin. Then again, there are so many ways to go about getting them involved as well. We'll throw some suggestions out there and if you like some of them, we suggest you take advantage of each one. Heck, you might even come up with a few of your own along the way.

Kids Cookbooks

One the best ways to kids involved that we like is purchasing a children's cookbook. It allows them to provide meals for the family, learn about the different ingredients that go into making something taste great, and the benefits of eating a healthy meal. Don't worry, there won't be anything that is too complex, but it will be just enough to have them interacting. Best of all the quality time you spend together will speak volumes for the family.

Doing the Teaching

In the beginning, you will be telling them what each step does and how it turns a bunch of ingredients into an actual meal. However, as time passes you will notice that they can take over and do all the steps by themselves. When this occurs, let it happen. Even if your child is only a toddler, giving them the chance to stir macaroni and cheese will make them feel like they're helping.

Different Foods to Try

Seriously, they aren't going to break out with the next big 7-course meal, but something simple like a scrambled egg, grilled cheese sandwich, soup, or even a fruit salad will do the trick. As a parent, you'll know when it's time to take the next step, but when you do, the positive effects will be endless. Think about it, down the road you won't have to be making all the meals yourself because you'll have help from the kids.

Cleaning Up

Listen, it's great to get everyone involved in the cooking aspect, but there aren't too many people who enjoy cleaning up afterwards. Make it a point to have everybody help you when the meal is over. It's a great way to interact as a family, and it allows you to be able to do other things throughout the evening. Who wants to spend an hour cleaning up after dinner or breakfast? Exactly, which is why you should get the whole family to help.

The #1 Tip

When you're teaching your kids to prepare food, don't take over. You know just as well as we do when you're children are struggling it a parent's intuition to help them get through it, but doing so isn't recommended. If you do then they will just ask for help every time something is difficult. Keep this in mind when helping them with food preparation and the overall effect will be a successful one.

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