Cooking is an activity that toddlers and preschoolers can enjoy. The following Comfort, Play & Teach™ tips provide ways to share with children the comforting power of foods, the fun of creating a meal and the science of cooking and eating healthy.
Turn a weekend morning into something special by making breakfast with your child. Use everyone's favourite breakfast foods and let him feel good about contributing to the happiness of others.
Prepare hot chocolate in the evening and savour it together while talking or reading a book so that you can both unwind and spend a pleasant moment together.
Ask your child to help you with simple tasks in the kitchen and show him that his help is valued. This will help him build confidence and self-esteem.
Let your child express and develop her creativity, e.g., invent a new recipe together and serve it to the whole family.
Place small amounts of different ingredients such as flour, sugar, vanilla extract, or jam in containers, and make each other guess their contents by exploring their smell, taste, or texture.
Together, make meals more attractive and fun by arranging food in playful shapes and configurations that you can then enjoy eating together.
Demonstrate basic science concepts, e.g., when dough is cooked, it goes from a soft state to a hard state; when solid chocolate is heated, it melts into a liquid.
Encourage healthy eating habits by cooking wholesome foods with your child and explaining what foods are rich in the things that are good for our bodies such as vitamins, proteins, and minerals.
Teach your child about counting and quantities, e.g., when making pancakes, we use two eggs and we measure 2 cups of flour.