The Best Cooking Games for Kids
Children learn through play. In fact, more and more research points to the fact that play is the best method of learning for children.
We see it in the way kids mimic their caregivers in their role-based play. One of the best places for learning through play to take place is in the kitchen, and with cooking-based games.
Cooking encompasses a range of valuable skills, from numeracy (weighing), and literacy (following recipes), to healthy living and dexterity. However, not all of the learning needs to take place with a pot and pan.
Here are our pick of the best cooking games for both pre-schoolers and primary school aged children.
The Best Cooking Games for Kids – For Pre-schoolers
Take control of the shopping list
Any parent of a young child will know doing the supermarket shop can either be an exercise in frustration and cries of “I’m bored” or a valuable learning experience.
Make supermarket shopping always fun by playing this family favourite Shopping List board game from Orchard Toys with pre-schoolers and young primary-aged children.
Give them their own kitchen
Pre-schoolers are the kings and queens of role-play. Give them their own play kitchen, or visit your local role play centre to access their play kitchen equipment, and they’ll soon be serving up a delicious menu of plastic fruit and wooden sandwiches.
Bring the outdoors in
Cooking needn’t be restricted to the kitchen: let your little ones learn some barbecue tricks, as well as have a great deal of fun with the Barbecue Party game.
Invest in some wooden play food
If you buy one toy for your children, play food is a winner. They will last for years and bring a huge amount of play value. We particularly love this Melissa and Doug Wooden Food set which allows children to learn about the different food groups whilst serving up their scrumptious feast.
The classic make believe game of tea parties
Get out all of their favourite teddies and let them create a make believe tea party. They will learn the skills of being a wonderful host, as well as improving their dexterity.
Give them the right tools for the job
The best cooking games are the ones where you get the reward of licking the spoon or by enjoying your feast afterwards. Get the smallest hands in on the action with this KitchenCraft Kids Baking Set, designed specifically for young children in mind.
The Best Cooking Games for Kids – For Primary Aged Children
Play at being real chefs
If kids are told they can’t have something, they want it right away. Keep them occupied by giving them some of your real cooking implements to role-play with.
For children who are too old for the preschool staples of plastic food and shopping baskets, you’ll reignite a love for role play. Salad spinners, wooden spoons, and plastic bowls are all usually a hit.
Start the conversation about food hygiene
At primary age, kids are just starting to embark on their own forays in to food preparation. Help them learn some basic food hygiene rules with the fun game Tummy Ache.
Use cooking as a maths tool
For primary-aged children beginning to get to grips with fractions, things can seem a little confusing. Make fun work of it by using a tear-and-share style Strawberry Party Cake and get them begging to learn more.
Let them go wild with a mud kitchen
Kitchen and cooking play can equal mess. Create a mud kitchen in the garden for your children and they can cook up a menu of mud pies, grass potions and flower perfume to their heart's content without any restrictions on cleanliness.
Learn about food and menus online
Toca Kitchen 2 is a fantastic app-based game for primary-aged children. A whole range of skills and information are learned as the child gets in to the game.
Make it scientific
For the reluctant kitchen entrant, make kitchen-based learning fun once more with some kitchen based science. After all, cooking is a science really, and this Kitchen Science Kit will prove it.
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