Why Baking is Good for Kids
This week, The Great British Bake Off returned to our television screens for the 11th season. Somewhat of a national treasure, we’re sure it will add a welcomed and necessary element of comfort and normality to our turbulent lives at the moment. In this post, we look at Why Baking is Good for Kids.
But what do we all love so much about GBBO? Cake of course! Watching cakes, baking cakes, eating cakes. We love everything and anything to do with cake and well, if you are sitting down to watch cake, it would be rude not to eat some at the same time. If the return of ‘Bake Off’ has you reaching for the self raising flour, have you considered the benefits of letting your little ones join in?
Baking with kids can be lots of fun and rather messy! But among all the mess, there are so many benefits that kids gain from the whole baking experience.
Baking can give your child lots of opportunity to develop and use both hands together in a coordinated way. Rolling balls of dough, rolling out dough with a rolling pin, and flattening dough with the hands are all great ways of letting kids practice their bilateral coordination skills. Developing good bilateral coordination skills can help children master the skills of tying shoelaces and cutting with scissors, among other skills.
Sifting flour into a large bowl is also a good bilateral activity: it trains a child to use one hand to “support” while the other does the heavy work.
Pouring ingredients into bowls and jugs, and spooning batter into tins are all good ways for kids to practice their eye-hand coordination. Squeezing icing onto cookies, or decorating cupcakes also uses eye-hand coordination.
Baking with kids can give them lots of opportunities to strengthen their hand and finger muscles. Have you ever made scones from scratch? Rubbing the dry ingredients into the butter/shortening is a great exercise for strengthening hand muscles.
Using both hands to rub the ingredients together is also good for bilateral coordination skills.
There should always be a recipe involved when baking with kids!
Whether they read the recipe themselves (in words or in pictures) or follow your verbal instructions, following a recipe can boost your child's listening and sequencing skills.
Following instructions is an important school skill, and baking can give your child lots of practice in this.
Helping your child to organize him/herself in the kitchen and clearing up messes is also a helpful life-skill. Help your child take dirty dishes to the sink and "clean up as you go" , and then remember to pack all the ingredients away afterwards!
Spatial perception and planning skills are also boosted when your child has to cut out cookies.
Letting your kids bake with you will also help them learn about measuring and about number concepts in real life. Let them count out eggs and cups of flour. Let them measure liquids and use measuring spoons, and just expose them to the concepts of maths in real life.
Got a budding star baker in your life? Why not treat them to our Little Chef Kids Wooden 5 Piece Baking Set? Encourage your kids to get creative in the kitchen with their very own personalised utensil set! This 5 piece all natural wooden set can be personalised and includes rolling pin, spatula, spoon, chopping board and pastry brush.