Kitchen Safety Tips
Guest article | 18 August 2012
Cooking is a fun way to spend time with the children…
However, the kitchen is not just one of the busiest parts of your house; it is also one of the most dangerous places at home, especially for children. With that said, you should consider your kids’ safety whenever they venture into the kitchen.
This doesn’t mean that you should stop bonding with your little ones in the kitchen. Neither should you ban them from going there. You should, however, make sure that you and your kids follow some kitchen safety guidelines when preparing meals or snacks for the family.
The best way to teach your kids about kitchen safety is to incorporate safety reminders as you teach them how to prepare meals.
For starters, ensure that there are no safety hazards like disinfectants in the kitchen before the cooking lessons begin. Also see to it that the floors are dry to avoid slipping. Next, you need to make sure that sharp objects are kept away from the reach of the children. You should also make sure that knives aren’t left in the sink with soapy water. You or the kids might forget that there’s a knife in there and may end up getting cut.
You can get cooking with the kids once you have checked that everything is in order.
It’s important to teach the kids safety and hygiene as you go along. Let’s say you’re baking cupcakes – be sure to tell the kids to wash their hands first before handling any food items. Remind them to be careful about water splatters on the floor to prevent slipping. You should also let them observe that you are wiping any spills as soon as you see them. Explain to them that doing this will lessen the chance of accidents from water spills. Remind them that they should make cleaning as you go a habit. This way, there’s less clutter after eating the meals you’re preparing. It will also help prevent contamination or food poisoning if you wipe your work areas clean every now and then.
Next, you can tell the kids to dry their hands as you start with the baking process. Remind your kids about not using kitchen appliances with wet hands as you combine the flour, salt, and baking powder. If they are old enough to be responsibly safe under supervision, you can also show them the proper way of using knives, which is to cut away from you. Also tell them that they should use chopping boards when they chop. For the little ones, it is of great importance to teach them to not touch knives at all.
Children should also be reminded about the dangers of boiling water. Remember, the younger the skin the more delicate it is. Just imagine what hot water would feel like for your children. Hence, remind older children not to leave hot drinks anywhere, especially if there are toddlers in the house who like reaching and grabbing for things. Incidentally, studies show that there has been an increase of 65% in incidents of burn patients among 4-year olds and younger. Do take that into consideration when handling hot beverages or boiling water for your meals, and ensure that none are within reach.
Make sure that you diligently teach children about these safety guidelines every time you cook with them.
Remember, these are lessons they can take with them as they grow up.
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