As more and more emphasis is placed these days on eating whole foods and having meals at home, some people may be eager to embrace this home-cooking lifestyle, but aren’t sure where to begin. After decades of eating gourmet food out at restaurants and heating up frozen dinners at home, many families just don’t know how to cook. Or their knowledge of cooking may be flawed – perhaps they think that cooking means hours of elaborate preparation and expensive grocery shopping trips. So teaching our children to cook helps prepare them for the future. Giving them these skills may help prevent them from getting stuck when necessity or principles call them to cook their own food.
Here are some other reasons why it’s a good idea to teach your children to cook.
Do the Math
It’s nearly impossible to cook without doing some math. Whether you’re cutting a whole recipe in half or just measuring out cups of flour, it’s a great way to give your kids a jump-start on math skills. Cooking may help children see that math has a practical application in the real world – perhaps they’ll see that it’s not as abstract as they think!
An Anti-Obesity Weapon
In the US and Europe, obesity among children has become problematic, even being called an obesity epidemic by some. Teaching children to cook encompasses such vital information as nutritional content, food preparation, and calorie information. Many children (and many adults, too!) simply don’t know how to prepare healthy food, or prepare foods in healthy ways. For instance, if they are not taught proper cooking skills, kids may think that the only way to prepare potatoes is in the form of greasy fries. Learning to cook, they can pick up important information and skills, such as how to make oven fries, and/or how to incorporate sweet potatoes in various dishes as well as white potatoes.
Teaching children to cook is a powerful learning experience, yet children do not necessarily feel like they’re learning anything major. After all, learning to cook can be a lot of fun. The lessons are big, though – children who know how to cook understand what goes into food preparation. They may have a better idea of the fact that food doesn’t just happen.
As your children learn to cook, they are learning a powerful tool to take control of their own health. It’s been said that your food can be your medicine, and if your children learn how to prepare foods, they can give their body just what it needs nutritionally, both now and in the future.