Cooking with Children Hygiene and Safety 101

While cooking with children is an activity full of learning and fun, it is also one that needs some careful planning to ensure it is successful and above all, safe.  Your child may be becoming more independent every day but cooking with children is one area that requires constant adult supervision. At least, I believe, until their early teens.

Kitchen Safety for Kids
Your child will need you working right alongside teaching them how to handle the equipment safely and correctly.  This is a great opportunity to emphasize the importance of following rules and practising the correct way to do new skills.  Just like leaning ballet or football, when cooking with children they need to be taught how to do things properly. For example, the correct way to hold a knife and the safe way to use a vegetable peeler.

Children and heat sources don’t mix so it is essential that an adult takes care of all the steps of the recipe that involve the stove and the oven. 

As your child grows and their fine and gross motor skills develop, the tasks you give them in the kitchen will also change.  The authors at The Kids Cook Monday have compiled a comprehensive list of Kitchen tasks for different age groups that are really useful when cooking with children.   This list gives examples of the types of cooking skills children can handle at different ages.  Your judgement as a parent is still necessary when deciding if your child is mature enough to handle the tasks.

Kitchen Hygiene for Kids
Good hygiene is another skill that should be constantly reinforced when cooking with children.  Getting your child to wash their hands with warm, soapy water before they start and always after handling raw meat and poultry is important for good health.  Washing fruits and vegetables to remove dirt and other contaminants is a simple skill that even a very young child can complete and one that is important.

Make sure you get your child to dress appropriately in preparation for cooking.  Child sized aprons are useful for keeping your child’s clothing clean and reducing the spread of germs.  I will discuss aprons for children in more detail in a future post.

Now is also the time to tie back their hair, if it is long, and remove any dangly jewellery – both the little princess kind and yours!

One last thing, don’t let your child cook if they have a cold.  This will help prevent the spread of germs and besides you don’t want them sneezing into the salad.

Further information can be found at these sites:

No comments:

Post a Comment