What are you cooking today?
I. Where does this meal come from?
This is a continued discussion about learning about the world through food following Angelina’s [tag]52 meals from 52 countries[/tag].
I like to cook and having another aim in mind other than the weekly menu plan was exciting to me. It would be exciting to ask my twitter friends, forum friends, friends and dip into the library of cook books for favourite recipes from different countries. My kids would start to associate their diverse food tastes. They already eat from around the world but we could be more deliberate. My cooking influences are from Britain, Italy, and The West Indies. British food is very eclectic with curry, believe it or not, being the most popular dish there.
Having had to dine in different countries the kids are much more likely to try whatever is infront of them and ask about it than treat it with disdain. Early exposure makes it ‘normal’ food to them.
Angelina raises many good points about picky eaters and raising kids who try new foods that I won’t repeat. Social conversation and working together are play activities you can easily cultivate with cooking. Kids are very me orientated and notice differences….usually very loudly and in a public place. Whilst we don’t always know the right thing to say at those times we have the opportunity for them to raise questions during a session of cooking like this.Where we can measure a suitable response or be honest and find out together.
Here’s the time you can go to the Internet or library and search for the answers.
Dinnertime provides plenty of talk time and social learning. Learning when to talk and expressing opinions, disagreeing nicely ( That’s stupid- doesn’t count) are all learning and I would argue play activities we should work on. Who wants to sit with the child who eats with their mouth open or never looks up from their food? how would they even know that this is a reason to be excluded. Mealtime family experiences would have changed that.
So now you have your conversational starters and games going.
The talk is flowing and the kids are learning socially responsible attitudes. Bring a little diversity into your home and give the chance for the kids to try and talk about new foods, new places and ask those questions that will make them better informed.
A new game we’ve added especially when we eat a meal from a different place. It’s a memory recall game. We’ve adapted the game from looking for 10seconds to 20 or more. The MO calls out all what he can see so he still participates.
What practical ways would you suggest or you do bring to learning about our world to your child?
Share them in the comments
Tonight my hubby made an amazing meal from Cuba! While eating we enjoyed some Cuban tunes courtesy of Pandora.com. I remember this convo on MLM (although couldn’t find it there again) from months ago and wanted to share. During dinner we talked about Cuba, embargoes, communism and the hope that someday we are able to visit this beautiful island with our 9 & 10 year old sons…
That is so amazing Jenna! I love stories like these. I’ll have to try these Cuban dishes. Thanks for stopping by, searching and leaving a comment 🙂