Sometimes I am amazed by how kids in this generation are so dependent as compare to how I was in my childhood. I’m not sure if you will agree with me, but about 30 years ago, kids had more freedom. At the age of 6, they could go play quite far from home unsupervised. In my case, I used to go to the forest alone or with a small group of friends who were also in my age. World back then was safer than it is right now I guess, because I couldn’t see myself let my 7 years old son went to the woods alone right now as well. We used to be very independent and we had responsibilities assigned to us at the early age. It’s a very important part of growing up so we become capable of taking care of ourselves and our families in the future.
I could cook a simple meal at a very young age. I don’t know the specific number, but I made rice and omelet when I was still in kindergarten. After school, I wouldn’t have to ask my parents for food, I would go straight to the kitchen to heat up some leftover or make instant noodle for myself. It was such a basic skill back then. I don’t know why our children aren’t like that anymore. Yaseen couldn’t grow up the way I grew up, and I understand that. There are so many factors like environment, economy and parenting methods that set us apart. But he shouldn’t miss a chance to challenge himself so I always encourage him to take up some small responsibilities like cooking a simple food and cleaning up after himself.
Well, this isn’t a perfect execution, but we’ve got to start somewhere, right? Yaseen can make basic meal with a help of instant mixes. It’s not the healthiest or the best way to cook, but I’m proud that he tried.
He love Paneer, Indian Cottage Cheese, and he often picks up Paneer Butter Masala Mix from a store to cook for us. I can trust him completely with this because he had cooked us this Paneer Butter Masala a number of times. So while he is busy cooking today, I only have to put rice in a rice cooker and heat up some Parathas to go with it.
Encourage Kids to Start Cooking
Kids have their favorite dishes. Start from there. It could be cookies, fried chicken or even ice cream. They will love to make their favorite food, and it will be very persuasive for them.
I know it can be quite nerve wrecking to have your kid cook in the kitchen at first when you think that they will be exposed to fire and sharp objects. You need to take a small precaution and watch them closer at first. Kids learn really fast so it’s easy to teach them to be careful about knifes, stoves and oven. You should always be around when they are cooking, but at the same time, you need to give them a lot of space to improve their skill.
Cooking is super fun. It’s also the way to express your creativity. Kids can really enjoy it and absorb the skill in the process. It’s important to give them a chance to learn and appreciate the simple food they made.
I can’t tell you how good it feels to have someone helped me in the kitchen. Yaseen could make simple egg dishes, sandwiches, rice porridge, and instant noodle without supervision. He can bake simple muffins and make pancakes with a little help from me. Now I can’t wait for him to learn to make other dishes. Oh, it sounds amazing that I don’t have to be the only one who cooks around here.