Special needs

Our Kids in the Kitchen

By Amy
Our Kids in the Kitchen

Got any feasting planned for Thanksgiving?  We’re having friends over for turkey, so Jack, Tal and I will be cooking together Monday.

We always look for ways to involve Talia in the kitchen. But most recipes have too many steps to hold her attention. Plus Talia’s got fine motor difficulties that complicate tasks like stirring, spreading, measuring and cutting.

But lately Talia’s had success with a book called Visual Recipes for Non-Readers by Tabitha Orth (Autism Asperger Publishing Co, 2006).

Although she can read, Tal still enjoys this visual cookbook. Here’s her book review: 

“I like the pictures the best.  They help me cook things.  I like making the pizza.”

Here’s my book review: 

We’ve tried all kinds of kids’ cookbooks. This one enables my daughter to experience the most independence in preparing food with a minimum of help. Recipes are broken into steps, each with few words of instructions and a photo.  They even include instructions and visuals for taking oven mitts on and off.

The hitch?  If you’re a fan of cooking from whole foods you’ll be disappointed. Many recipes involve frozen or canned food. So you’ll find recipes showing how to open and heat a can of ravioli and how to microwave a hot dog.  Even so, this cookbook might be a good confidence builder for your child. Plus it might inspire you to make your own personalized visual cookbook.

Got any tips for cooking with kids?

This article was originally published on Sep 18, 2011

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