Let Kids Help in the Kitchen

Have you ever been in the middle of getting dinner ready when your child asks if he can help you? While it’s very kind of him to offer his assistance, sometimes it can be more work to let a toddler help you with dinner. Instead of saying no to the offer, or saying yes and stressing over the “help” you might receive, try giving your child one of these tasks for dinner prep this week.

Dinner Chore Ideas for Kids

  • Set silverware
  • Get condiments from the fridge
  • Fold napkins
  • Wipe table and counters
  • Peel potatoes
  • Measure spices
  • Crack eggs
  • Measure liquid ingredients
  • Stir ingredients
  • Put ice in glasses
  • Unload dishwasher

Giving children different ways to help at dinnertime teaches them to work as a team and be helpful. It also is a great way to instill life skills at a young age. As they get older, you can teach them how to help in more advanced ways, such as chopping vegetables, putting things in the oven, loading the dishwasher, and even making side dishes on their own.

If you have multiple kids and want to set a schedule for everyone to help during the week, there are a variety of options to consider. You could create a schedule where each child is responsible for a different task each night of the week. Alternatively, chores could rotate on a weekly basis, so each child has the same dinner chore for a week at a time. Another option is a chore jar, which holds pieces of paper with all the different tasks for dinner. Each evening, your kids pick one or more items from the jar; whatever they pick is the task they do that evening. Lastly, each kid could get her own night where she helps with all the dinner tasks. The great thing about this is that you get individual time with one child at a time. You can talk with her as you work together and help with any of the tasks she might have trouble with.

However you choose to do it, getting your kids in the kitchen is a great way to spend more time together and make lasting memories…and delicious food!