On September 13th it’s the kids’ turn to cook dinner! Sponsored by Young Chef’s Academy, National Kids Take Over The Kitchen Day aims to encourage kids to get into the kitchen to plan, prepare, and cook meals.
Besides being fun and a great way to spend time together as a family, kids benefit from meal planning, preparation, and cooking by:
- reading and following instructions;
- practicing counting and math skills;
- working on coordination and fine motor skills;
- encouraging cooperation;
- introducing thoughtfulness, appreciation, and awareness about where food comes from;
- providing lessons in contributing to the household;
- starting conversations about eating well and nutrition; and
- encouraging kids to try new foods.
My kids have always loved to cook. As a stay-at-home mom, I realized that cooking with my kids was a way for me to connect with them while going about my everyday tasks. I’ve found that when my kids have selected ingredients at the grocery store, chosen a recipe, or helped me prepare a meal, they often are more willing to try new foods, and just eat better in general.
Check out Little Lake County writer Heather’s columns, Kid in the Kitchen with Girl in the Kitchen, and also her blog, Girl and her Kitchen, for recipes and to read about her experiences cooking with her kids. Heather’s recipe for Homemade Ranch Dip is one of our favorites. My kids are able to make this recipe mostly on their own, and it also encourages them to eat their veggies.
This year, I’m planning to let my kids, ages five and seven, prepare dinner alone on September 13th– they’ll truly take over the kitchen! We may be eating PB&J with crudités, but that’s okay. I look forward to seeing what they come up with for a menu.
So whatever it looks like for your family, allow your kids to “cook” on September 13th. Whether they will be truly preparing a meal on their own, or symbolically acting as assistant chef, aren’t you curious to see what they’ll come up with?
Will your kids be preparing a meal on National Kids Take Over the Kitchen Day? Tell us what they will be making in the comments section below.