My children are always begging to help me in the kitchen, but sometimes I have a hard time thinking of things that they can do. I did a little brainstorming and compiled a list of 10 things that children as young as age 2 can do in the kitchen.
1.Dump ingredients into a bowl. You measure it and then allow them to dump it into the bowl.
2. Stir. Since they will probably not stir it as well as it needs to be done, you can tell them that you will start and they can finish.
3. Put toppings on pizza. Lay out the toppings and let them have fun spreading them on the pizza.
4. Put forks, napkins, and condiments on the table. Of course you’re not going to let a very small child put the breakable dishes on the table, but they can set the forks and napkins around and help you put small items on the table like ketchup or salad dressing.
5. Sweep the floor. A child is not going to be able to get the floor completely swept, but they will feel like such a big boy or girl using the broom. It will probably keep them occupied for a while. You can also teach them how to hold the dustpan for you while you sweep the dirt into it.
6. Tear up salad greens. If salad is on the menu, you can keep children occupied tearing the lettuce. They may even do a better job at it than you!
7. Wash dishes. Give them a chair, a sink full of soapy water, and some unbreakable dishes, and let them have at it! They may end up a little bit wet, and you will most likely have to re-do the dishes, but they will have fun! They will also be developing the skills they need to wash them them right way when they get a little older.
8. Dry dishes. If you’re not in the mood for a wet kitchen, you could wash and let them dry.
9. Chop Vegetables with an enclosed chopper. If you have a hand chopper that is enclosed, they could take a turn at chopping.
10. Help you unload the dishwasher. Kids as young as age 1 love to help unload the silverware from the dishwasher. They can hand you one piece of silverware at a time while you put them away.
Children will probably not do everything perfectly in the kitchen, and you may get frustrated when they use the spoon more often as a bat than as a stirring utensil. But when you allow them to help, they will develop skills that will allow them to really be a help in the future. You are also spending valuable time with them, and they will know by the time you spend how much you love them.
What did I miss? I’m sure there are more things that kids can do in the kitchen that I didn’t think to put on this list. I’d love for you to leave a comment and give some more ideas!
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