Why Family Cooking Together Matters
In today’s busy world, ‘cooking dinner’ often means throwing a pizza into the oven, or popping a ready-made lasagna in the microwave. Making time to prepare a full meal might seem impossible between work, traffic, school, and after-school activities.
It’s important to make time for family cooking together, because there are plenty of benefits for your family! Your family is a team, and reinforcing that bond will only make your family a stronger unit.
The Importance of Family Cooking Together
As school budgets are cut, fewer and fewer schools are offering life skills and home economics classes. Many of the kitchen skills that were taught at school are assumed to be taught at home. Here are some great benefits of cooking together as a family.
- Form and reinforce bonds, and foster family togetherness by teaching cooking at home.
- Connect with your kids by creating something that others can enjoy – especially during the holidays!
- Teach vocabulary and concepts that might not usually be addressed at schools, like exotic ingredients or metric measurements
- Teach problem solving – including converting recipes, substitutes if you’re missing ingredients, and flexibility. Depending on your child’s age, they might even be able to apply math or science lessons learned at school!
- Teach planning and organization – how to think ahead and be prepared by setting out a weekly menu and grocery list.
- Introduce the concept of social responsibility, such as animal welfare, local produce and economy, and sustainably-sourced ingredients.
- Foster teamwork in your kitchen. Very young kids won’t be able (or allowed!) to cut and cook ingredients, but they can help select groceries, set the table, measure out ingredients, tear up lettuce for salads, and be taste testers too! By involving your kids in an important part of the day, you help build confidence and self-worth.
- Develop social skills! It’s much easier for kids to take their food and sit in front of the TV or play games on their tablet. It takes a bit more work for kids to converse with the family, but it’s worthwhile!
- Teach cleanliness and appreciation. Kids will learn that the meal that they sit down to doesn’t appear out of mid-air. Their food comes from somewhere, and involving them from shopping to the finished product will help demonstrate that hard work goes into the meal they enjoy.
More Benefits of Family Cooking Together
As you can see, there are plenty of benefits to cooking together as a family! Here are a few more reasons it’s important to involve your kids in the kitchen.
- Nutrition is something that many schools don’t teach until kids are in middle and high school. Cooking with your kids helps teach them how to eat healthy and make informed choices about the food they eat.
- While many kids will still prefer to play games or watch TV, cooking as a family together – and then eating the meal prepared together – will lay the groundwork for kids to prioritize family later in life.
- Teenagers may not be as eager to participate in preparing the nightly meal – for now. Once they’ve grown, they’ll think back fondly on cooking with mom and dad. Before you know it, they’ll be in the kitchen at the holidays, cooking alongside you again!
Ideas for Family Cooking Together
Now that you’re cooking together, you can do plenty of fun activities in conjunction with the nightly meal.
Consider starting a blog and keeping extended family updated on what’s cooking in your kitchen tonight!
With a little work, you can easily put together a family cookbook which you could give away during the holidays, or keep as a special memento.
Try new things! Allow your kids to pick new recipes to try. This will help keep them interested, engage their participation, and help build their confidence at planning and decision making.
Team Building With Taste – Cooking Together, Growing Together
Cooking with a corporate team has plenty of similarities to cooking with family. Even though they may seem very different, bonding, problem solving, organization, and planning skills are all commonalities between the two. That said, you won’t have to outlaw the HR guy from boiling water, or banning knives from your best sales rep!
Just as you foster a fun and cooperative environment with your kids in the kitchen, where everyone’s responsibilities contributes to the end product, you can do the same with your corporate team. You’ll leave the kitchen with your team feeling stronger and more confident.
Team Building With Taste can provide the kitchen and know-how for your corporate team, and your team will do the rest! They’ll be working together and having fun within minutes!