A few thoughts after cooking with my kids for 12 years.
  1. At a very young age, teach your kids basic knife skills. Hand toddlers a butter knife and a soft piece of fruit like a peach or a pear. Next safest knife is a serrated knife. They can practice sawing and keeping their fingers curled under and out of the way. Paring knife next. Then the chef knife!
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  2. Hand them scraps of dough to make mini tarts. Let them over-mix, over-fill, over-do.
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  3. Kids are more likely to eat their dinner if they participate in the shopping and cooking.
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  4. Never force your kids to cook with you. Let them see you enjoying it (fake it if you need to!), then they might want to join in.
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  5. Let them hold your wrist while you whisk or flip or stir.
  6. Hold them on your hip at the stove so that they feel like they're a part of the experience.
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  7. There will be waste.
  8. Things will get broken.
  9. Fingers will get cut.
  10. Eggs will drop to the floor.
  11. Let go.
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  12. Clean up.
  13. Start again.
  14. Play.
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