Suggestions for creating a positive cooking experience for young children (ages 3 – 7 and beyond). Set up a cooking area in a corner of the family kitchen which is scaled to a child’s size. A low table or counter top that can be established as the child’s own work space for cooking is helpful. Miniature kitchen tools that are real makes learning fun!
1. one small refrigerator with freezer OR a specific portion of the refrigerator and freezer in the kitchen. This could be a low drawer or shelf.
2. one toaster oven for baking (it is safer for beginners and scaled to a child’s size).
3. one hot plate (same as above, although a stove can be used safely with supervision).
4. a low counter/work deck and cupboards to store utensils scaled to a child’s size (for example: apple boxes make nice cupboards; set a wooden top over several apple boxes and cover with contact paper).
5. a low counter top to place wash basin for washing dishes; place near a sink so water is available.
6. kitchen utensils scaled to a child’s size: knives, scrapers, eggbeater, wire whisk, spoons, mixing bowls, spatula, pancake turner, cake pans, cookie sheets, baking brush, measuring spoons, measuring cups, grater, muffin tins, etc. (keep alert for small items that work well for children; Corning stores have mini rolling pins, graters that are used for garlic and lemon zest and works well for kids tograte carrots and cheeses. Tupperware has child sized bowls and dishes; Echo has cake pans, bread pans, and baking sheets that arejust the right size for use in a toaster oven).
7. Clean-up supplies in small scale; dish towel, sponge, hand towels, hot pads, etc. Small bottle of dish soap.