Cooking is a great activity to do with children. It is a fun way to teach them about fruits, vegetables, different flavors, various textures of food and the aromas of different foods. It exposes children to new vocabulary while they are cooking. Children learn to follow instructions as cooking needs to be done step by step. It exposes them to the different cuisines of the world. While cooking, children use all 5 senses, thus it enhances the use of the senses. Children also learn to clean up after they finish cooking which is a great way to teach them life skills.
Through this post, I will be discussing some fun cooking recipes that can be made in the classroom along with the children. These will help children learn about the different ingredients that go into making each of the things prepared and also the preparation process itself will help enhance their motor skills. So let’s start cooking.
Chocolate and Coconut Balls
This is a perfect treat to make during the festive season. It is easy to prepare and children will love to make it at home for their family. In the process of making the chocolate balls children feel the different textures of desiccated coconut, crushed biscuits, and the dough while mixing all the ingredients. Mixing the ingredients enhances the children’s hand and wrist muscles.
To make this delicious treat the teacher should make arrangements for mixing bowls for each child, paper plates, and zip lock bags for children to carry their treat home. The ingredients required are:
- Condensed milk
- Desiccated coconut
- Cocoa powder
The teacher gives a few biscuits to each child in their bowls. Children are asked to pound and crush the biscuits to a fine powder. To the crushed biscuits, children add desiccated coconut, condensed milk, and some cocoa powder. The teacher asks the children to mix all the ingredients into a dough. The teacher then asks the children to divide the dough and roll it into small balls. The chocolate balls are lastly rolled in the desiccated coconut. The children have made a delicious treat of coconut chocolate balls for themselves. These are stored in the zip lock bags for the children to take home.
Fruit Pulp Salad
Fruits are an essential part of the daily diet. Fruits provide the essential nutrients needed by the body for building the immune system, for stronger bones, and for providing more energy. There are so many different fruits available today and children should be given every type of fruit to taste from a young age so that they can develop the taste for them.
While making the fruit pulp salad children learn to use the fruit chopper. Children also learn about the different fruits. They learn about primary colors and secondary colors too. So let us make our healthy fruit salad.
Each child is given a tall transparent glass to arrange the layers of the fruit pulp and each child is also given spoons. The ingredients required are:
- Blueberries. (all the fruits must be washed, peeled, deseeded, and cut into pieces before giving to the children)
The children are given the fruits one at a time to put in the fruit chopper to make it into a pulp. They are asked to make a layer of the fruit pulp in their glass before moving on to the next fruit. The children fill their glasses in the following order:
- Strawberry pulp
- Orange pulp
- Pineapple pulp
- Grape pulp
- Blueberry pulp
The aim to arrange it in this order is to teach the children that red, yellow and blue are primary colors. When red and yellow are mixed we ger orange and when yellow and blue and mixed we get green.
Children love eating cake and the concept of making their own cake and eating it is very exciting to them. Making a cheesecake does not require an oven so there is no fear of children getting burnt. This activity requires children to handle an electric beater so the teachers should be careful while doing the activity.
Making a cheesecake enhances children’s small motor skills. It enhances the children’s concentration as they have to be careful while using the electric beater. Children learn new vocabulary in the form of the ingredients used in making the cheesecake.
The teachers should make certain preparations from before. A zip lock bag with a few biscuits should be kept ready for each child. A rolling pin must be kept for each child. The teacher should melt some gelatin and keep it ready. Some melted butter should be kept ready. A bowl should be given to each child. An electric beater is required for making the cheesecake. The ingredients required are:
- Cream cheese
- Flavored crush
- Fresh cream
The teacher gives each child the zip lock bag with the biscuits and gives them the rolling pin. She instructs them to crush the biscuits with the rolling pin. The children are asked to empty the bag of crushed biscuits into their bowl. They pour a little melted butter in the bowl and mix it with the crushed biscuits. The children are asked to press the biscuits at the bottom of the bowl to form a crust.
The teacher takes a large bowl. She adds the sugar and the cream cheese in it. The children are given a chance one at a time to blend the cream cheese and sugar with the electric beater. Then the teacher adds the fresh cream and the flavored crush. The children use the beater to mix the ingredients. In the end, the teacher blends in the gelatin. Each child pours the blended mixture into their bowl using a ladle. The teacher asks the children to put the bowls in the refrigerator for their cheesecake to set.
This activity should be done at the start of the day as it takes a few hours for the cheesecake to set. This way children can take their yummy preparation with them when they go home.
Incorporating cooking activities as a part of the school curriculum is good for the overall development of the children. Children learn about new flavors, new tastes, aromas, and different cuisines. Children also learn how to handle certain kitchen equipment. Cooking enhances their concentration and motor skills too. The best part about preschool cooking is the children enjoying while they prepare some delicious food and then getting to eat it.