Remember the story of The Little Red Hen and how she frantically runs around getting work done to get food on the table? Every animal she asks for help along the way is quick to respond Not I. Her story hits a little bit too close to home for adults prepping massive holiday meals. There are more people showing up at the table – and taking a nap afterwards – than coming together to get the food ready. Sound familiar?
Perhaps this holiday season it is time to deploy a new strategy. Why not enlist the help of the kids? Instead of finding something else for them to do, get them involved in the planning and preparation of some easy kid-friendly dishes. Collectively our YCL libraries have a wide variety of cookbooks available on the shelves and online. Once you find the recipes, make some things ahead of time, so that you can truly enjoy your baking and cooking time with the kids. It should spell less stress for you in the final hours and less mess ( just maybe). But overall, you get some help in the kitchen and provide your kids a hands-on opportunity to learn and participate in your family’s holiday traditions.
Five Reasons to Get the Kids Cooking and Baking
- Enlisting the kids to help will create some wonderful family memories.
Cooking and baking together will instill a sense of pride. The kids will love showing off what they make to relatives.
Planning, shopping, and preparing recipes provide lots of natural learning opportunities such as math skills when measuring and basic literacy skills when saying food names, cooking terms, and descriptions like sweet, sticky, sour, and delicious!
You will have a little army of help, and hopefully get to sit down and enjoy the meal.
Depending on the recipes you make together…the kids may try eating a new vegetable or two!