by Beverly Ramitan | Beverly Ramitan is the woman behind Bevs Kitchen PH. Although an electronics and communications engineer by profession, she chose to pursue a career in the social media world being a graphics designer, video editor, content creator, and social media manager amongst other things. This gave her the liberty of working from home while being a hands-on mom to her daughter and following her passion for cooking. She takes her online audience on a gastronomic adventure with her mouth-watering images and videos. You can find her on Instagram @bevskitchenph or on Facebook Bevs Kitchen PH.
Parents, especially moms, are always asked, “What’s for dinner?” Why? It’s because one of our primary duties as parents has been to feed our kids – from the day they are born and as they continue growing up.
However, we should consider looking at cooking for the family from a different perspective. Gone are the days when one parent was the only one doing the cooking for the family.
All things we do for our family are done with love and passion. That passion can be shared with our kids. Just like how we share our love with them, cooking is no different.
Yes… I am talking about letting the kids into the kitchen and having them help cook. Kids that can stand up on a kitchen stool, can watch and learn. When they are older, can even be given simple tasks to do.
Let’s treasure every chance we get to spend with our kids. And what’s more enjoyable than having fun while cooking delicious foods that the whole family can enjoy eating afterward? Here are the top 5 reasons why you need to cook with your kids today!
#1 Cooking with kids enhances fine motor skills
“Oh, those delicate and soft hands! We do not want them to have even a small cut and we’re letting them inside the kitchen? Imagine all the possible accidents that may happen!”
It is normal to have these worries but “possible” doesn’t mean it “will” happen. As they are just children, we can start them off in the kitchen safely by setting the kitchen up to be clear of all things that they can’t handle safely. We can let them do simpler things like tearing lettuce for salad, mixing batter, or even putting cupcake liners into cupcake tins.
Those are tasks that adults can do with ease but may take a bit of effort for our kids. They’re using their tiny hands and at the same time, enhancing their fine motor skills in the process. They’ll get to discover a whole new world of textures, temperatures, and a lot more just by letting them do these simple things.
#2 It provides supplemental reading exercise
Reading doesn’t need to be confined to books or educational materials from school. Parents can show kids a variety of reading materials by teaching them how to read product labels, expiration dates, or even cookbooks. This is a good exercise as kids will learn to associate reading with an enjoyable activity and thus, find more joy in reading.
We can help them further by explaining what all the things on the labels mean – what those items written in the nutrition facts do for their bodies and how cooking those foods and eating them can make them strong and healthy.
#3 Cooking with kids also improves their ability to follow instructions
Cooking is a process and learning from cooking is, too. Children can learn how to follow simple instructions when we involve them in doing things that will require them to follow steps to have a correct end-product. Teaching them to follow step-by-step instructions will also develop their focus and attention to detail.
Parents are not only teaching kids the skill of cooking, but also the skill of active listening and following instructions carefully. As a result, the kids will learn to appreciate how the simple art of following steps can result in a delicious meal that the family can enjoy together.
#4 It serves as a bonding activity for parents and kids
Having more time to spend with our kids is the silver lining of this pandemic. But, most parents can’t shake the habit of letting the kids play while they hurry to finish all the housework. How can we effectively balance time between household tasks and spending time with our kids? If we can do both at the same time, wouldn’t that be more fun?
Especially in the kitchen, when we want to do things accurately and tidy up as quickly as we can, letting the kids join us and having them help may slow us down and mess the kitchen up even more. But the time spent with them, while letting them do these things, will count as a great bonding activity. Sharing what you do to take care of your kids, allows them to see how much love you put into what you do for them.
#5 It teaches kids a fundamental life skill
It doesn’t hurt to train them early. Cooking is a basic life skill everyone must learn to survive and our kids deserve to learn that from their best teachers on life skills – their parents. One day, our kids will leave our home to go to college, or to work , or to get married, and the lessons they learn from us about cooking is something they will use every day, even more than the education that we provided for them.
Parents can start making a change in the usual routine at home and let the children in the kitchen. The kids can mess things up or topple some things down. These early experiences in cooking with their parents will be the foundation of a lot of things in their lives. They’ll develop their fine motor skills and learn how to make their own sandwich for work in the future.
Perhaps the value may not be seen today, but the kids will appreciate what they learn from us when they become independent adults in the future. That will all be thanks to the parents who decided that cooking with their kids was beneficial.
Spending time cooking with our kids in the kitchen is time spent with the people we love most in this world – our family. And that alone makes it all worth it!