One thing we started to do last summer was making the boys pick out a different (or some sort of variety) meal each week and cook it for diner! They complained about it but once they got started they did not mind cooking! And dare I say my middle child even love this activity (maybe b/c durning that one meal it is just him and me or he really likes to cook!)!
Cole Cooking Shrimp Alfredo!
(and it is so easy just a bag of frozen shrimp, a jar of
alfredo sauce, what ever noodles they like, and a
Jesse's meal is a little more, Enchiladas w/ Mexican Rice and Quesadillas!
Both these Meals are picked out by them b/c it is their favorite (which is a great way to start the summer)! And they are learning how to make it so that they can grow up knowing how to feed them selfs with out a drive throw window or a delivery guy! Not that there is any thing wrong w/ that every once in a while!
So this active starts w/ the kid picking out what meal they would like to 'help' with then you sit down talk about what goes into it, make their own (or you can write it out for them) grocery list! Then while you are grocery shopping they can pick up their items off the shelf and cross it off on their own list (keeps them busy while grocery shopping and you can always add other favorite items to look for)! Then on their day to make the meal they can help read the directions, get the ingredients out, pour, mix, stir, making sure they don't handle anything hot or leave them alone while thing in the kitchen are still hot, make sure everything you ask the kid to do is age appropriate (my son in the first pix is 8, I would not ask my 3 year old to stir w/ hot pan, she is better w/ stirring cake mix, they are not hot!).
Cooking Meals are a good way to work on reading and following direction recognizing items, and even math as you are comparing prices! Plus if they are writing the list out they can work on spelling! And they are learning a valuable skill they will use all their life: How To Cook!!! If your lucky they will sprinkle in a little "Love" w/ every meal!