Teaching your children to work hard for their rewards
One of the great opportunities we have as homeschooling parents is showing our children how to balance work and play as well as teaching them to be responsible and industrious. As children grow older, we can begin to help our children understand how they are responsible for their choices in a variety of areas. And part of that is learning how to remain diligent and work for the things they want.
Opportunities abound for learning these lessons and it’s important we are on the lookout for them. We can sneak these activities into anything — even baking a cake. Rather than baking a cake and serving it to our children, we can take the time to include them in the process so they understand the work and time it takes for something as simple as a cake. Have them see all of the steps that are involved – reading the recipe, assembling the ingredients, measuring carefully, and following the instructions. By going through the process with us, they discover that it takes time to get what we want. There are trade-offs. Instead of playing, they are baking a cake. Cakes don’t magically appear. Someone has to take the time to make them.
If you don’t consider yourself a great baker, the Parenting Edition of eHow.com has a starter’s guide to teaching your children to bake. An important key is starting with a simple, healthy recipe. Angie Browning, winner of the M&S Everyday Chefs baking challenge, came up with a delicious recipe for Lemon and Poppyseed Drizzle loaf cake — a quick and easy cake that you and your kids can work on together, even on busy days.
While baking a cake, you can also incorporate mini-lessons about proper portion control, fractions, and the many health benefits that different ingredients can have. It’s an excellent way to teach them to be mindful of the things they eat, plus they also get a tasty treat once the cake is finished!
Teaching our children to bake is a great way to do school and have fun at the same time. As we go along, our kids might want to start experimenting with recipes, adding their favorite ingredients into well-known dishes, and even searching out new things they’d like to try to make! Imagine all the reading that takes place and opportunities to discuss math while looking through cookbooks or cooking websites! The BBC also suggests that deciding what to cook and shopping for ingredients together can be a great opportunity to talk to your kids about being responsible in their food choices. As you pick out ingredients, you could also tell your child what other dishes can be made with the ingredients, giving them ideas of what food to cook with you next. Learning how to both follow recipes and adapt them to make them their own are great learning opportunities for homeschoolers.