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Kids in the Kitchen – 4 Reasons Why it’s a GOOD Thing

by Tabitha @ Saving Toward A Better Life on July 14, 2015 · 47 comments

in All,Homeschooling,kids,Parenting

kidsinthekitchen

 

First off, can I say, that boy in that picture right there gets cuter every day.  Oh my goodness.  Okay, enough sidebar.

Kids in the Kitchen: 4 Reasons why it’s a GOOD thing!

My little Bug is a helper.  Always has been.  As a toddler, I heard all the time, “I help, Mama.  I help.”  (Except “help” came out “hep”.  A-freakin-dorable.)

But as we all know sometimes kids even with the best intentions can hinder more than they can help if there isn’t something developmentally appropriate they can do.  This is the way it was in the kitchen.  Especially here recently, Bug has really wanted to help in the kitchen.  But at 5:30 when I’m up to my elbows in trying to get dinner done is not a good time for him to walk in the kitchen and say “I want to help, Mama.”  At that point I don’t have time to prepare something he can help with.  You know what I mean.

But he’s nearly 7 now and so he’s capable of doing things.  But when stuff is boiling over on the stove, it’s not the time for me to try to teach him how to do something.

So I promised him this summer we would have a whole week of cooking camp.  A week where we can not only have fun in the kitchen and make some yummy stuff, but that I can teach him his way around the kitchen so that when he asks to help I can say, “YES!  Please help Mama by getting a cup of milk – or get me a spatula – or measure out a tablespoon of flour – etc etc.”

I can’t wait to tell you how our cooking camp went.  I’m going to tell you everything we made and some fun kitchen things to do.  But first I want to tell you WHY Kids in the Kitchen is a good thing

  1. Time Together
    Bug and I are always together – as in the same house and usually in the same room.  But there is together as in physically present in the same place and together – the kind of together that kids will remember years from now.  THAT’S the kind of together cooking with your kids is.  I have wonderful memories of spending time in the kitchen with my mom, standing in a kitchen chair so I could reach the counter and help make biscuits, donuts, pies, apple turnovers and more.  I treasure making these memories with Bug.
  2. Life Skills
    Baking is fun but cooking camp with my son was more than just baking stuff.  I taught him how to make some of our favorite dinners.  I want my son to have better kitchen skills than my husband.  LOL.  I want him to know that cooking isn’t just the wife’s work.  That it’s perfectly okay for the husband to make dinner sometimes (besides something made on the grill!)
    I also want him to be used to picking up a dish or two and washing them!
  3. Math in Practice
    If you have a math whiz or a math struggler, being in the kitchen can help!  For the whiz, it’s math with a real life application.  For the struggler, it’s practicing math with a real life application.  See?  Great for anyone!
    My 6 year old has an excellent grasp on fractions, he can measure using measuring cups or spoons, he can read a recipe and even knows the difference in tsp and Tbsp.
  4. Independence
    Frankly, Bug knowing his way around the kitchen is GREAT for me.  He’s less dependent on me for everything from a cup of juice to a new spoon when he drops his on the floor.  He can make his own sandwiches now too!
    And the week of cooking camp, the sense of pride he had over everything we made was exciting to see.  Can’t we all relate?  We feel better about ourselves when we accomplish something.  And accomplishments are good for self esteem.  And sometimes in the kitchen, just like in life, the outcomes aren’t always what we planned (trust me, we had a couple flubs during our cooking camp week).  But you know what, you have to learn to roll with the punches.
    Teaching them independence in the kitchen builds them up to be independent in other things.  And handling little failures (like flat biscuits or burnt cookies) helps them handle bigger failures.


Stay tuned for all the recipes we made at cooking camp – well, just the ones that worked.  LOL!

Do you let your kids in the kitchen?  What’s your favorite things to make together?  Check out EzPz Mixes for some ideas, ready to bake treats and kid friendly tools to help you get started!

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{ 47 comments… read them below or add one }

1 mother of 3 July 28, 2015 at 6:55 am

I too have just started having my boys help out in the kitchen. Each week I pick a night for one boy to help me; they get to choose what we’re making and I’m amazed at how quickly they pick up on what needs to be done. My middle son even enjoys cooking on the grill; something i was petrified to have him try at only 9 years old but he took to it like a fish to water and now asks to grill on days when it’s not his turn. The pride they feel is wonderful but I also love that they don’t complain about WHAT we’re eating nearly as often when they had a hand in preparing it too.

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2 Tabitha @ Saving Toward A Better Life July 28, 2015 at 9:01 am

Isn’t it great that something so simple makes such a difference in their lives and attitudes?

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3 Maureen August 14, 2015 at 7:53 am

One of my nephews loves to work with me in the kitchen when I bake.

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4 lisa August 14, 2015 at 9:39 am

I’m all for it! I’d be in trouble if my husband didn’t cook. I don’t cook. and he’s excellent at it.

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5 Katrina Angele August 14, 2015 at 5:31 pm

We just started letting my son help out more in the kitchen. He has a little step stool and loves being able to help.

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6 Allyson Ballard Bossie August 14, 2015 at 9:11 pm

I have always had my kids in the kitchen as soon as they could stand. Even if they just stirred, it teaches them that we all contribute to a meal before we partake!

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7 Crystal Rogers Walker August 15, 2015 at 11:45 am

I love you article I think it is most important for girls and boys to help in the kitchen they can learn all kinds of things not just about cooking

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8 Arlene Mccurdy August 15, 2015 at 5:56 pm

i love having the little ones in the kitchen

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9 lisa August 15, 2015 at 6:12 pm

Boys and girls should be encouraged at a young age to help and learn everyday. They get older and lose interest.

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10 Julie Lundstrom August 15, 2015 at 7:17 pm

With my son having Autism, this is so important. He has sensory issues with food and the more I get him to help me cook the better he is doing with food.

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11 Holly Thomas August 16, 2015 at 3:37 am

I think it is a great idea, there is so much to learn!

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12 Gina H. August 16, 2015 at 4:47 am

I like the idea of having a cooking camp at home.

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13 lisa August 16, 2015 at 10:57 am

Both boys and girls should know how to cook. I never had an interest in it. To this day I can’t cook. Well, I do have a couple of things that I make well but who wants meatballs everyday!

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14 Kimberly Wood August 16, 2015 at 12:43 pm

That sis a cute boy in the kitchen it is good to start them young that way nobody will ever go hungry if someone in the house is sick or busy.

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15 Crystal Rogers Walker August 16, 2015 at 2:46 pm

I have 5 Grandkids and I always make sure that they help me in the kicten because that’s how they will learn

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16 catherine killgore August 17, 2015 at 12:02 am

My grandson loves to cook now and is in fact a cook. And he learned to love cooking helping his mom and me when he was a child.

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17 Robin Abrams August 17, 2015 at 7:45 am

My grandkids and I cook meals together daily. I believe kids should learn how to cook early.

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18 Donna Quarles August 17, 2015 at 8:53 am

I always let my kids help cuz then they want to eat what was made.

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19 marissa c August 17, 2015 at 9:42 am

My four year old son loves to help me in kitchen whether it’s throwing away trash, putting up dishes or helping prepare dinner. I really think it’s a great way to teach kids life skills they need.

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20 lisa August 17, 2015 at 12:09 pm

Along with learning how to cook, it’s a good time to teach them to clean as they go. Someone that I know is a wonderful cook, but leaves a huge mess behind for me to clean up.

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21 Haley Cook August 17, 2015 at 12:53 pm

My son is almost 2 and he already loves to help me in the kitchen. He understands he needs to stay away from things that are hot and not to touch certain sharp things but he is always there ready to hand me something I need or help mix things. He loves it !

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22 John Joseph August 17, 2015 at 9:52 pm

I never looked at it that way before! Nice prospective

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23 Danielle August 18, 2015 at 7:56 am

My girls love cooking in the kitchen with me. They love helping with dinner. I find that when they are involved with the cooking process they tend to eat it! The also love to bake. I started with them in the kitchen at 2 years old!

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24 debbie joann yoder August 18, 2015 at 12:30 pm

Yes! we make cookies

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25 Casey B August 18, 2015 at 12:59 pm

My 5 year old helps me cook supper every night!

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26 lisa August 19, 2015 at 4:59 pm

It’s always a good idea to let kids help out when they’re young and willing to help.

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27 Lauralee Hensley August 19, 2015 at 7:58 pm

My mom had my siblings and I help in the kitchen from about three or four years old. Yes, my step-son allowed to help in the kitchen. It’s good for children to see that they can accomplish something good.

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28 Tami Vollenweider August 20, 2015 at 11:28 pm

I let my son help me the kitchen many years ago! I’d pull up a chair next to the counter,and he would love to use my mixer,especially when I was making cookies!

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29 Allyson Ballard Bossie August 23, 2015 at 8:19 pm

The younger kids get in the kitchen and start helping prep food, the more interested in healthy food they will be. So much more adventurous taste buds ime

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30 lisa August 25, 2015 at 10:06 am

It’s cute when kids are at the age that they want to help out. It does slow you down some and make a mess, but they grow up so fast.

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31 Mia August 25, 2015 at 11:23 am

My granddaughter loves to come and bake with me. We last made banana bread which is one of our favorites.

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32 michelle elizondo August 25, 2015 at 5:51 pm

Pretty awesome. Glad to incorporate the children anytime!

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33 Danielle August 26, 2015 at 8:04 am

My son loves helping me in the kitchen. No matter what I’m doing cooking baking etc.. If he’s not helping me he’s copying me on his little kitchen set lol.

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34 Robin Abrams August 27, 2015 at 7:03 pm

I love cooking in the kitchen with my grandkids. We have fun cooking together

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35 Lana Simanovicki August 28, 2015 at 6:21 am

All my kids lovecooking

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36 polly August 28, 2015 at 3:05 pm

My grandson loves to help me in the kitchen…he loves to help bake cookies!

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37 JIll H August 28, 2015 at 8:40 pm

I think that is great! I think children should be encouraged to cook. It is a life skill & like you said, spending time together.

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38 shelleyb August 30, 2015 at 7:39 am

Summer to present, my 10 year old has been loving making recipes from boxed or pouch mixes. Recently, moved on to a real recipe for a dessert. I had to take a deep breath and find my patience. He’s great- I’m the one impatient. He loves baking.

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39 Holly Thomas August 30, 2015 at 2:45 pm

I loved to cook when I was a kid.

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40 lisa August 31, 2015 at 4:06 pm

One on one time with the kids is fun. They open up and can talk about the funniest things.

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41 Robin Abrams August 31, 2015 at 5:01 pm

My kids started cooking as soon as they could reach the stove. Now my grandkids are cooking

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42 shelleyb September 1, 2015 at 8:25 am

Seems like kids are more likely to try something NEW if they had a hand in making it. It’s amazing what they can help with- given the chance.

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43 Tramond Roper September 1, 2015 at 4:51 pm

I agree. These things are important because its a ruff world out there.

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44 CR Williams September 1, 2015 at 10:17 pm

My daughter always want to help in the kitchen. So I let her from time to time.

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45 debbie campbell September 4, 2015 at 11:20 am

It is a great time when you have your kids help cook. They learn good skills, but it also makes them feel like they are helping.

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46 Jerry Marquardt September 4, 2015 at 2:13 pm

The kids can help in the kitchen a lot. But you have to be sensible for safety and sanitation.

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47 lisa September 4, 2015 at 5:58 pm

When the kids are young and eager to help, embrace it. They grow up way too quickly. Enjoy these moments where you can enjoy their company.

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