Kitchen toys provide ideal tools for kinesthetic learners to develop skills. Kinesthetic children learn by doing an activity rather than by reading or listening to how the activity is done. Moving, standing, and working to manipulate objects are vitally important to the kinesthetic child.
Even though the primary purpose for play kitchen toys is for play time, it is not uncommon for items that not intentionally designed for educating to help develop skills in a child. A real kitchen is full of wonderful things for kids to learn. However, a real kitchen is not a safe place for kids without very close adult supervision. This is where toys such as a measuring cup, rolling pin, and whisk offer a safe teaching experience for the child.
Play kitchen toys are not always easy to find in retail stores but they are easy to find online. The Kidkraft kitchen line has items including complete kitchen appliances including a stove, sink, and refrigerator along with baking sets, toasters, coffee pots and more. These types of products are ideal for the kinesthetic learner by providing the much-needed hands-on learning process.
A play baking set is a great example of how these toys help kinesthetic learners. Allowing a child to use a pretend baking set to bake cookies teaches the child to follow instructions, measure ingredients and stir. Play kitchen toys such as baking sets usually include a rolling pin, cooking pan, measuring spoon, nonworking mixer, spatula, and plastic chocolate chip cookies. Even though these are toy instruments, they still have a lot of functionality. For example, the Kidkraft kitchen rolling pin actually works and can be used for cut-out cookies. Learning how to multitask is another positive benefit of baking “cookies” using kitchen toys.
Another learning opportunity is found with using pretend cookware toys. These sets usually contain a frying pan with lid, plates, cups, and utensils. These sets allow kinesthetic learners to role play all of the steps involved in a complete meal preparation. Kids then use the toys to create a table setting and serve their meal. For added fun, the toy utensils and table setting can be used with a real lunch of sandwiches and chips.
Another learning opportunity comes with using a cupcake stand set. These sets usually contain plastic cupcakes with a stand. Letting your kinesthetic child pretend to measure and mix ingredients, bake the cupcakes, then arrange the cupcakes on the stand teaches many valuable skills for lifelong activities, including balance and coordination skills. For added fun, the toy stand can be used to hold eight real cupcakes for dessert.
Playing with kitchen toys creates a sense of responsibility and pride in a child. As they cook and serve “dinner,” they get a sense of accomplishment and great pride in their efforts. With activity based learning, it is important to teach kids to complete the activity all the way. A great way to motivate them to complete the activity is by praising their accomplishment and their efforts to learn. There are still more learning opportunities awaiting them at the end of the meal preparation task. As every chef knows, preparing and serving the meal is followed by clearing the table, then washing and drying the dishes in ordinary soap and water. Learning to manipulate the washcloth or sponge on the kitchen toys helps her coordination skills. Additionally, she will learn the importance of cleanliness, especially in kitchen products. As an added benefit, kids might even take more interest in helping with the real meal process.
Playing with kitchen toys helps kinesthetic learners develop important skills without even realizing it. Learning the way things go together in a hands-on manner teaches lessons that will stay with the child as they grow. The key is keeping them physically involved in their education.
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Joe Kanooga is a father of two kids, a successful business owner and the author of numerous articles about kitchen toys. Click here to download our free Kidkraft kitchen guidebook filled with tips, ideas and information.
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