Cooking Activities with Grandchildren

First, I need to share a little experience.  I recently babysat our precisous grandson, Simon. We had a grand time together.

Several months ago, Grandpa bought a large plastic container of animal cookies. The kind that are not frosted.  The kind that (to me) taste like cardboard.

“It’s for the grandchildren,” he exclaimed. (Then why did I see him sneak into the pantry and snitch handfuls of cookies when nary a grandchild was in sight??)

We kept the cookies on the floor of our walk-in pantry. One time, when I was making supper, I went to the pantry. Simon followed me. He saw the almost empty container of cookies. And, being a normal child, he wanted a cookie. And, being the nice grandma that I was, I gave him three little ones.

The pantry door has a teeny tiny squeak when it is opened. Simon instantly learned that the squeaking meant the pantry was open — and he could gain access to those little cardboard cookies. (I really must improve his culinary tastes for cookies, now mustn’t I??)

Anytime he hears the squeaking door, he dashes to the pantry.  Alas the cookies are all gone now so he stands there puzzled, trying to figure out where they went.  It is so cute — the dashing to the pantry NOT the lost forlorn look on his face when he realizes the cookies are gone!

Upward and onward to today’s idea.  This little experience made me think it would be great fun to have a cooking activity with my grandchildren.

Yah, yah, I hear you saying. I bake cookies with my grandkids. I whip up batches of pancakes. I make all sorts of culinary delights with them. Cooking with grandchildren isn’t a revolutionary idea, ya know.

That’s true. But add a twist to it. Create a cooking show with them. Film them making those cooies, pancakes, and that special culinary delight that you both love so much. So, grab your video camera and head to the kitchen.

Here’s a video to give you an idea of what you can do. (This is so fun to watch!)

You might want to practice a couple of times before you start filming. That way, your little sous chef  can have confidence as he demonstrates how to make that special something. After filming your grandchild, switch places. Let HIM do the filming and YOU do the demonstrating.

When you are finished, copy your movies to a DVD — bloopers and all — and send it home with your grandchild. He will have tons of fun watching it with his friends and family.

To add more fun to the activity, create a chef’s hat for him to wear. The easiest style to make is one out of butcher paper. Make a tube hat that is similar to the picture at the beginning of my post. Or, you can make a pourfy paper one.  Here’s a tutorial on how to make it.

Or, you could sew a hat (and matching apron if you are really ambitious).  Here’s a great tutorial on how to sew one. I love how she used a die cut machine and added the word ‘chef’ on her hat.

If you don’t have a video camera, use your digital camera to take pictures and create your own tutorial for the family. E-mail it out to your other grandchildren. Post it to your family blog. Print it in booklet form for your grandchild to take home.

Bon appétit!

Have you had any experiences filming a cooking activity?


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