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18 May, 2020

Supporting Learning At Home – Literacy in the Kitchen

Getting children involved in the kitchen is a great way to encourage learning at home. Children love being part of the cooking process so they won’t even realise that they are practising their Maths and English skills in the process. And don’t worry not all kitchen activities have to be messy.

Many different learning areas can be explored in the kitchen. Giving children simple tasks to complete and help you when preparing meals can be a great way of getting them involved. Simple steps like fetching ingredients, writing shopping lists, measuring ingredients or mixing are great ways to get started.

We previously discussed our favourite ways of incorporating Maths into the kitchen here. Today we will look at some ways to explore language in the kitchen.

Reading

Cook books and recipes are a fun way to encourage your child to practise their reading in the kitchen. You can find child friendly recipes in children’s cookbooks or online. Getting used to reading and following recipes will help your child to learn to follow sequenced instructions and understand the structure of instructional texts.

  • Encourage your child to take a look through a cookbook and choose a recipe they would like to follow.
  • Discuss the layout of a recipe with your child and point out the different sections like the ingredients, the method etc.
  • Ask your child to read the ingredients list and gather some of the easy to reach ingredients.
  • Many cookbooks have a table of contents and an index. Discuss these text features with your child and help them to use them to find recipes in the cookbook. You can find out more about these text features in Learn Primary’s reading lessons.

Writing

Writing can also be incorporated into kitchen activities in a fun and practical way. Children will enjoy helping you out with the writing of lists and recipes.

  • Ask your child to help you write a shopping list for your next grocery shop.
  • Take some photographs of your child cooking. They can add captions when they have finished. They could even send the pictures to family or friends and write a short description of what they made.
  • Ask older children to write down their favourite recipes. They could even put together a book and share the recipes with others. Encourage them to follow the layout of a recipe. If they need some tips, you can find some lessons on writing a recipe in the English section of Learn Primary.

Speaking and Listening

Kitchen activities are a great way to practise giving and following instructions and develop children’s active listening and presenting skills.

  • Play ‘Master Chef’ with your child. Have them pretend that they are on a cooking show and present their favourite recipes. You could even film it on your phone or camera.
  • Practise giving clear, step-by-step instructions when completing kitchen tasks together. This will help your child later when it comes to writing procedural texts like recipes.
  • Watch some recipe videos and try to follow along. This is a great way to practise following spoken instructions.
  • Play some language games based around the topic of food or cooking like ‘I Spy’ or ‘Memory Game’.

As always, we would love to hear from you and your kids and see pictures of you cooking up a storm…so please email us 😀

Happy Cooking!

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