We were inspired to make this Texas Persimmon Pie with locally grown persimmons from Lauren Hubele's blog. Lauren is our alternative health care practioner and our family has been flu and allergy free all season with gemmotherapy!
Great stocking- stuffer!
½ cup coconut milk
¼ cup honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon ginger juice
So, sometimes parents ask us "What's with all the cooking? Is it really helping my kid learn?" To which we answer a happy hearty "YES!".
Early Childhood Education experts agree that cooking with children has innumerous benefits from laying the foundation for basic math concepts to instilling healthy eating habits.
"We believe that children learn best through play and when they are able to fully engage all of their senses.
The textures, smells, and tastes from the various ingredients provide an unmatched organic experience with an ability to enthrall, entice, and spur a sense of wonder in the children’s eyes. As educators, we foster each child’s independence and encourage the exploration of culinary creations, igniting a sense of accomplishment which provides an insatiable desire to push boundaries while we work together to create tantalizing results."
NAEYC National Association for Education of Young Children
"One of the greatest benefits to cooking with children is helping them develop an adventurous and diverse taste palette. Children are more likely to try different ingredients and foods if they experience them at an early age."
2. Cooking Encourages Creativity
You can incorporate the appreciation of cooking as an art by calling attention to colors, textures, and patterns while allowing children to make decisions, add extra features, and do as much of the work as possible.
(Early Childhood News)
5. Mathematical Concepts
Cooking experiences provide a hands-on, contextual way to introduce mathematical concepts to children and being actively involved within a meaningful context is important when it comes to early learning. Especially with abstract concepts such as those related to measurement, number and sequencing.
Shape Kabobs with Cucumber Circles, Carrot Triangles, and Apple Squares
While cooking, children synthesize logico-mathematical knowledge as they notice shapes, combine ingredients, observe changes in the texture and color of the mixture, and chart their preferences.
Guidelines for Preschool Learning Experiences
8. Science Concepts
"Cooking activities connect to three important content areas in science: life science, physics, and chemistry.
The ingredients in recipes come from plants and animals. Children begin to understand the connection between their own lives and the plants and animals that help meet their needs.
Making butter by shaking cream in a jar with a marble
Experimenting with simple machines, tools, and actions and their effect on objects connects cooking activities to physics.
As children combine liquid and dry ingredients, they can immediately see a change in materials. The addition of heat and cold also causes changes in materials that children can observe. For children cooking is beginning chemistry."
Teaching STEM in the Early Years by Sally Moomaw
Shake the cream until you can't hear the marble anymore
Science curriculum can be effective through the engaging medium of cooking, and lend to positive life skills in health and nutrition.
9. Social Emotional Development
Food is a great vehicle for communication. Children learn to share, how to take turns, and to enjoy eating together. Cooking promotes social knowledge as kids learn rules for hygiene and dining, explore cultural traditions regarding the creation of certain foods, and follow safety precautions during preparation and cooking.
10. Cooking is Fun!
We offer all kinds of activities at Austin Children's Garden but cooking is the one activity that every kid comes running to the table, eager, curious, and ready to learn. Stay tuned for our new cookbook 'Kids Love to Cook!'.
Here's a few pics: