Our family eats most meals at home, so we cook often. Very often, which means a lot of our time is spent in the kitchen. Yet, when I think of helping my son become a reader, my first thought includes books, a comfortable couch and a blanket. Not necessarily pots and pans.
But the fact remains that impacting a child’s pre-literacy skills isn't limited to reading on a couch. Some of the most meaningful moments in helping a child become a reader happen in small pockets throughout the day, often in and around a daily routine.
So here are a few great, very simple ways to include your child in the kitchen routine while feeding their growing mind.
Remember, keep it simple and make it fun.
- Look or scroll through your list of recipes, giving your child the chance to pick the main/side dish
- Read the ingredients list together
- Gather all the ingredients by package recognition and/or reading labels
- Measure the spices together (pointing out the different abbreviations used in measurements)
- As you’re preparing the feast, have conversations that include common language used in and around the kitchen (e.g., preheat, whisk, roast, tenderize, mince, marinate, caramelize, etc.)
- Set a timer to keep track of the cooking time (pointing out which column indicates hours, minutes and seconds)