Its ‘our’ Responsibility
My son has always shown interest in playing with utensils. If I ask him to play with his toys, he gets bored easily but he can play for hours with bowls and spoons. I noticed a similar fascination with my daughter. She’s just a year old but she would sneak into the kitchen, pick up a spoon from the drawer and run away!
So, it has nothing to do with gender. Children are automatically attracted to utensils and other household things. Maybe because they see us play with them all the time. We, as parents should not discourage them. The only thing we should ensure is their safety. Make sure you keep all sharp objects far from their reach and then allow them to play with whatever they are interested in.
During our stay in the US, we learned that in the Montessori schools, they teach kids to live an independent life. During the lunch breaks, they don’t eat directly from their lunch boxes, as we did. They are taught to serve their food from their lunch box to a plate and pour water from their bottle to a glass and then sit and eat from the plate. When they finish eating, they are also taught to wash their plates, spoons and glass, wipe them and keep in their respective baskets.
I loved their concept of teaching kids so early in their life to eat in a proper way and also keep their utensils clean. If we allow them to follow the same practice at home, it’ll gradually become a habit and will stay with them forever.
Strangely, in some Indian households, elderly people don’t allow the kids in the kitchen. Especially if the child is a boy, it’s a big no. They don’t even allow boys to play with kitchen utensils, forget about buying them a kitchen set to play with.
To break this stereotype, I allow my son to play with ‘Let’s Cook’ kitchen set. It’s a wonderful activity for children. It has all the appliances, utensils, stove, microwave, teapot and vegetables too. I love the way he takes care of his kitchen set. He would prepare tea for us and milk for his younger sister. He knows very well what is our choice of foods and sometimes goes ahead and relishes his imaginary pizza all by himself.
I hope my little foodie grows up with the same enthusiasm for cooking. I would never stop him from cooking, cleaning or doing his dishes. I am sure if I encourage him right from this age, he would grow up loving it. I have grown up seeing my dad cooking delicious meals for us, I love it when my husband does cleaning or cooking as ‘our’ responsibility and I can't wait to see my son grow up with the same mindset.