Cooking with Nursery Rhymes
As an Experience Early Learning Blog Ambassador, we receive the Experience Early Learning preschool curriculum in exchange for sharing our honest and authentic stories resulting from our personal experiences. As always, our opinions on amazing things for children are 100% our own. Keep in mind that all preschoolers do things in their own time and on their own terms. What one is ready for, another might not be. Please use your best judgement when planning activities for your children.
I was so excited when we examined the Experience Early Learning box for this month and found that we had food/cooking nursery rhymes!
I love to cook and we do quite a bit here, so we decided that this was another great opportunity for the children to have more cooking experiences.
Cooking teaches children not only math skills such as counting and measuring but also Chemistry as we explore how matter changes.
Of course cooking with children can also strengthen relationships by having a good time together, working on a project together--even if the grown-up isn’t completely sure of their cooking ability!
The Experience Early Learning themes this week are food-based Nursery Rhymes such as Pat-a-Cake, Old Mother Hubbard, Little Jack Horner, There was an Old Woman, and Hot Cross Buns.
Monday was Pat-A-Cake day and the teachers enjoyed working with the children on the activities.
We learned the new nursery rhyme and then the kiddos had the opportunity to create a cupcake with sprinkles using finger paint and paper confetti.
It's always fun to watch the preschoolers explore new materials and mediums. This particular activity was wonderful from a sensory perspective because we used our fingers instead of paintbrushes.
And let's not forget about the whole concept of making mess. The kiddos love it!
I went in to introduce the cooking activity but I had fun with them reciting the rhyme. I happened to have my 3-year old grandson in the room this day and I sat him on my lap and did the rhyme as I would have done when he was a baby and he was in all giggles as were many of the children.
So I told them that we were going to bake our own cake from scratch (meaning not from a box), I showed them the recipe and we talked about the ingredients that we use, and how the same ingredients, flour, salt, sugar, butter, eggs and milk can make many different things such as cookies, pancakes, pie crust and bread.
We talked about how most of them have very similar ingredients but some have others things also.
A few projects ago, we started using a graph to chart the ingredients that we use each time we cook or bake together as a class. This is great to teach about math/graphing, language, writing, and science.
The children all washed their hands and sat around the table. Each child was able to come up and add a different ingredient and stir the cake. They were also permitted to scoop it into a mini muffin tin and add a spoonful of sprinkles that were used instead of icing.
The preschoolers were so excited to be able to make this and see how truly easy it is to bake a cake! They all wanted to go home and make it with their parents.
We had our homemade cupcakes for dessert after lunch that day and then still had enough that they were able to take home a few too.
It’s great that Experience Early Learning is very easily added to when we think of fun projects that are geared towards our particular set of children.