At what age ... ?

Discussion in 'Baking with Children' started by Nahum, May 9, 2013.

  1. Nahum

    Nahum Member

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    I am going to be a parent for the first time in August. Its a very exciting time, as you can imagine. I am curious at what age other parents introduced their children to baking. I have fond memories of my father baking bread and my mother, well, pretty much everything else. So, I think this might be fun for our little girl when she is old enough.

    Anywho, just curious. Thank you. :)
     
    Nahum, May 9, 2013
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  2. Nahum

    Becky Well-Known Member

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    Ooh congratulations! Do you know whether you are having a boy or girl?

    I don't have kids yet myself, but I imagine that at the age of around 2-3 is when I'd start introducing them to baking. Children at that age like to get their hands in and get mucky!
     
    Becky, May 10, 2013
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  3. Nahum

    limcid Well-Known Member

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    Congratulations!

    I think that if you do a lot of baking, they will get their introduction long before you formally introduce them to it. In fact, they will probably fall right into it when wanting to help Mommy do her thing. I think it will be a natural process. Have fun!!
     
    limcid, May 10, 2013
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  4. Nahum

    Loopyloo Member

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    Wow. Congrats! My babies were so different from each other its hard to say an age. We teach our kids the way around the kitchen about the time we teach to potty train. We start by teaching them how to wash up before touching food then move on to making sandwiches. Usually by two they are able to pour things in the bowl. I also had the luck of being a stay at home mommy so it was a daily thing that we were cooking. My Son is 11 now and can cook any meal that isnt raw meat. My Daughter is 8 and can bake great but still makes a terrible mess. The one year old that we have in our home twice a week is just learning that the stove is hot and how to smear jam on bread.

    I really enjoy watching these little ones learn. Its a little miracle to watch their world unfold in front of them. Both of my kids have their own garden and cook from the ingredients they grow now.
     
    Loopyloo, May 10, 2013
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  5. Nahum

    Nahum Member

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    Thank you much for the info. To answer the question above, the baby is a little girl. :)
     
    Nahum, May 10, 2013
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  6. Nahum

    brittany Well-Known Member

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    I started letting my boys help me with frosting, icing, and sprinkles when they were around two. It was messy but fun. They also enjoy cutting the shapes out of cookie dough for Christmas cookies. There is nothing better than making our children happy. I would say the best age is the one you feel most comfortable with.
     
    brittany, May 13, 2013
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  7. Nahum

    ACSAPA Well-Known Member

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    I didn't show my daughter how to bake bread until she was 10 , because kneading the dough and waiting for the dough to rise in a warm place are all steps that take patience and impulse control, which small children don't have.

    I taught her how to draw when she was 3 because art is my main skill and it's what I went to college for. She can draw and craft things amazingly well because she's 15 and has been making art for years, but she didn't start baking with me until she was 10.
     
    ACSAPA, May 13, 2013
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  8. Nahum

    Lilley1 Active Member

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    Congratulations!

    You can never start teaching your children how to bake too early. My boys are ages 3 and 5 and I started teaching them little things about baking and cooking since before they could talk. Even during our trips to the grocery store I found myself telling them all about the ingredients we were purchasing while they were nestled in their car seat strapped to the grocery cart. :p

    They love to watch me prep anything we are about to bake. Most of the time, the kids stand on a stool and ask question after question. Their minds are like a sponge and just absorb everything we talk about, so it makes me happy knowing they will one day be able make themselves and their families a home-made meal.
     
    Lilley1, May 14, 2013
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  9. Nahum

    Soliloquy Well-Known Member

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    My mom is a preschool teacher for kids with special needs, and she believes in cooking with children as early and as often as possible. Even if they make a mess with the flour, they're still getting sensory stimulation, learning the physical properties of the various ingredients, etc.

    She told the story of how one time when I was a little kid, she realized it was too quiet, and came into the kitchen to check on us only to discover I had convinced my toddler brother to pour out an entire bag of rice. We were both watching it pile on the floor, fascinated. Most mothers would have swooped down to take away the rice and punish the child, but my mom just watched from the doorway thinking how we were getting a great sensory experience. After we were done she salvaged what she could, then encouraged us to feel the individual seeds before and after cooking.

    I like to think she raised some smart kids :)
     
    Soliloquy, May 17, 2013
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  10. Nahum

    ihopper Member

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    Congratulations Nahum! :) I think that teaching your kids how to bake is a wonderful thing! My mom didn't teach me how to bake until she saw that I had an interest in it. I guess she didn't want to force the whole thing on me. But I am really grateful that my mom taught me how to bake when I was eleven years old. It must have been hard for her back then. I have very fond memories of my first time baking. I don't remember how many burnt pastries it took before I finally made an evenly cooked one. Nevertheless, I am very happy. It was those "failures" that inspired me to be a better baker.
     
    ihopper, May 18, 2013
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  11. Nahum

    VioletxSkye Well-Known Member

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    I'm not a parent yet, but like ihopper said, I wasn't sat on the counter to help until I showed interest. I showed interest at a pretty early age. Mainly because I wanted the first pick at the utensils that were used so I could eat the excess but still. I learned about 2-3 and haven't stopped since. Even just stirring for small arms is a lot. A cake would be pretty good. Helping you pour the ingredients, mix them, then with some assistance pour it into the dish. Having them already measured or measuring them in front of them, but doing it yourself until she is older will be good. I say a cake because it's all going into one dish unlike cupcakes which a disaster waiting to happen even for older people.
     
    VioletxSkye, May 21, 2013
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  12. Nahum

    aa888 Member

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    My mom introduced me to baking at about 5 years old I would say. My little sister who is currently 6 years old, I started baking with her at around 4 years of age. I started off with getting her to assist me with sugar cookies and using the cookie cutters, as well as decorating the cookies.
     
    aa888, May 26, 2013
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  13. Nahum

    Suplex790 Well-Known Member

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    I think around 5 years old is a good time to start teaching them about baking. At that age they are fascinated by it usually, and it can be made really fun for them, especially if using lots of fun ingredients also. I don't have children myself, but my mother taught me at around this age, and I put that down to the fact why I am so interested in baking all of these years later :)
     
    Suplex790, May 26, 2013
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  14. Nahum

    TwinkleBell Well-Known Member

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    I started baking at the age of 10. I remembered when I had entered my first 4-H Favorite Foods Contest when I made Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownies a blue-ribbon. That was a very long time ago. I'm now 34, and that was 24 years ago, time surely flies. I've continued making ever since!

    However, I turned out being a pro in cake decorating. I started cake decorating at the age of 18. I definitely waited far too long to get started! ;)
     
    TwinkleBell, Jun 1, 2013
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  15. Nahum

    kad613 Member

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    Congratulations on the baby!

    My daughter was around 4 years of age when she decided it was time to get her hands full of cookie dough. I would give her a bowl with cookie dough and she would roll the dough in her hands and press it on the cookie sheet. There would be different size of cookies but she loved it. It was something she made on her own and she was so proud of it. They love to stir, so cakes are great as well. Now that she's a teenager she enjoys baking with me and it's a great opportunity to talk!
     
    kad613, Jun 3, 2013
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  16. Nahum

    natb Member

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    Congratulations

    It seems that I was helping my Mom at a very early age. I can remember my brother pushing a chair up to the stove so he could stand on it and make an egg, of course Mom was always very close by, with a watchful eye. My son was so little, when he would help me make bread, mostly, he would make roads threw his share of the flour with his little trucks. He is an amazing cook now, I believe much better than I am.
     
    natb, Jun 3, 2013
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    mochaisis Member

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    My mother says that I've been in the kitchen all my life. When I was very young, my mother used to drop me off at my grandmother's house each day before she went to work. I was always at my grandmother's side, especially while she cooked. I learned how to use a mortar and pestal at 4 years old, and I was popping peas and kneading dough like a chef by the age of 6. :)
     
    mochaisis, Jun 4, 2013
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  18. Nahum

    danielz Member

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    I don't really think there is a minimum age. My two youngest are 5 and 7 years old and for as far as I can remember I have always tried to involve them, whether it be sprinkling chocolate chips or helping me mix the ingredients. You just have to monitor them and make sure they don't make a mess! When they were smaller, my daughters would just sit and watch me whisk and I'm sure they felt as if they were baking themselves.
     
    danielz, Jun 5, 2013
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  19. Nahum

    Nahum Member

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    Thanks all for the great info. It sounds like five and up is a good starting point. :)
     
    Nahum, Jun 5, 2013
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  20. Nahum

    Katie.M.Hess New Member

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    I think any time when the child doesn't put things in his/her mouth is the right time. I let my two year old nephew help me knead the dough when I make my pies, and he helps stir the eggs. Always keep an eye on them though, for they could get curious at any age.
     
    Katie.M.Hess, Sep 4, 2013
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