While Cooking with Young Children
- Everyone should have a chance to see, smell, feel, and possibly taste the ingredients before they are combined, and after. This gives them an opportunity to compare and contrast.
- Help children observe and talk about contrast, color, texture, size, and shape.
- Help children observe and talk about what happens when ingredients are combined, such as the effects of temperature on food. Express in words that water is a liquid; when it boils, it changes into a water vapor called steam; when it freezes, it changes into a solid called ice.
- Use complete sentences and the correct words for all actions, objects and concepts, but always accept the child's unique way of expressing himself or describing something.
- Follow through on projects. Everyone should have a chance to taste what he or she has helped to make.
- Encourage all those who participated to share the responsibility of cleaning up. Show the children how to wash the utensils and sponge the surfaces. Make sure all utensils are clean before putting them away. Even if a spot has been missed, recognize the effort of little hands. Improvement in skills comes from guidance and practice, not criticism.