First he poured the flour into the bowl. He sprinkled a dash of salt and scooped a teaspoon or two of baking powder. “My turn to stir, my turn PLLEAASSEEE!” Jake began to stir it all together flour flipping out of the bowl as Spencer supervised that his little brother was stirring properly. Taking turns they both blended the ingredients into one mixture no longer separated. After the milk, eggs, vanilla and butter were added they slopped it all into a greased bread pan which I then slid into the hot oven. The waiting began. The smell of sweet bread filled the kitchen, cinnamon floating in the air. Anticipation rose from the other two siblings that ran down the steps clop clop, bam, bam with heavy quick feet. Questions echoing in the kitchen “What did you make? Is it cinnamon bread, Mama’s bread, apple pie? Tell us, can we look in the oven?” Such is a day when I bake bread in our home.
Do your kids love to bake with you? Do you just do baking at Christmas time for the Christmas cookies? Do you let the kids just watch or do you let them add the ingredients, pour the milk and mix it all together?
My kids love to help bake. They actually enjoy helping more than they enjoy eating it. I think it is because it is fun spending time with mom in the kitchen and they have their hands in something they get to create. They get to watch it rise and then share in the reward of eating something they helped to make. It is a great learning process for children to start with an ingredient and witness the work of their hands creating an actual tangible creation. It makes them feel proud, capable and confident that they are able to create. They also feel trusted by an adult to have the privilege to do it.
The next time you have cookies or brownies to bake for a birthday at school or for a party consider letting your child help you. Yes, it can be messy but relax and know you can clean up anything. You only have a short time to spend time with your child and it is a small window in which you can teach your child confidence, don’t miss that time.
Take the time to bake with your child.