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Thursday, December 22, 2016

Ages of Cooking Ability

In the beginning our babies start life unable to do anything for their selves. Feeding, changing and taking care of those sweet babies is our job. But in time we start teaching them how to do simple tasks of being able to sit up, walk, feed their selves and the list goes on. It is in the toddler years that kids can start learning to help in the kitchen while under high supervision as well. The basic tasks of setting the table, squeezing lemons, matching silverware, helping to empty the dishwasher, helping to do simple tasks with an adult are things that can be learnt early in life. 

As time goes on and children develop better motor skills they can learn to do more. By the age of 4 or 5 Hand and eye coordination is getting better as well. At times our children may seem a bit backward and this can be improved with extra help. If your child seems ahead of their age in kitchen skills then you should continue the good work of keeping them involved and interested.

At the time to entering school is present a childs fine motor skills allows them to take on more detailed work. They are at the age to start using measuring spoons and forming meatballs or nuggets. Adult supervision is still in high need to ensure safety is present. Start at the age of six or seven to teach skills such as dicing, mincing vegetables, peeling raw potatoes with a peeler, slicing and scooping avocados and greasing pans. 

My grand-daughter is 8 years old at the present and all previous skills have been achieved. Now she is ready to take on new areas in the skills of cooking. It is up to the adult to know if they are mature enough to work with the stove or not. One good place to start is microwave and toaster oven recipes. The ability to use pizza cutters, can openers, as well as putting mix in muffin cups are all abilities to succeed at around the ages of 8 or 9. Meanwhile, skills of rinsing dishes, putting away leftovers, and making sandwiches are all items that can be done at this age. 

In the future we look forward to watching our princess work alone in the kitchen. The early basic skills are necessary to learn so that this level can be achieved. The same kitchen rules apply and parents role is to supervise and ensure rules are followed. Reminders such as using hot pad, washing hands, preventing mistakes on the stove top or oven can help them learn and be ready for ever growing achievements. 

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