Cooking is always a great activity for children. It gives them an opportunity to develop social skills and life skills as they work together to create something from nothing.
Cooking activities provide hands-on maths and science experiences, where they can freely use all their senses to make better sense of the world around them. When cooking your next meal, allow your child to help with small tasks around the kitchen.
Tips and ideas :
- Using a child-friendly knife, invite your child to chop vegetables with you. Talk about the vegetables as you cut together (ie. where they come from, how they grow, colours, texture, taste). Encourage your child to count the chopped pieces for extra counting practise.
- Children can help to: Peel corn, chop softer vegetables like eggplant, cucumber, tomato, okra, celery
- Alternatively, you can chop whilst you ask your child to hand you vegetables to maintain their participation.
- Use it as an opportunity to talk about nutrition and how certain foods keep us strong and healthy.
- Hygiene and safety: For a safe cooking experience, ensure you discuss how to use various tools and hygiene. During hot cooking experiences, allow your child to watch from a distance.
Cooking exposes children to mathematical concepts in real life, whilst they strengthen fine motor skills and practise hand-eye coordination. Inviting children to participate in the cooking process also gets children excited for dinner time!
- Understanding of the world: making observations, understanding where food comes from, cause and effect
- Sensory: exploring textures, taste, smell
- Numeracy: sequencing, counting
- Language and communication: cooking related vocabulary, planning
- Fine motor: hand eye coordination, muscle strengthening
Discuss with your child
- Can you name these vegetables?
- How many pieces have you cut?
- What do you notice about these vegetables?
- What do you notice when…?
- What’s the next step?
- How does it taste?