Rabbi Shmuley suggests ideas for how to get your children involved in the dinner process:
- Small children can help pick out recipes from a colorful cookbook with you. "Make a shopping list together, and when you go to the supermarket, have them help you find those foods," Rabbi Shmuley says.
- Children ages 7 to 9 can help you in the kitchen. Ask them to prepare food, make a salad, wash fruit and even help you assemble ingredients for a recipe for dinner, Rabbi Shmuley says. Children that age also can help set the table.
- Children ages 10, 11 and 12 can do more advanced cooking with parental supervision, Rabbi Shmuley says. "If they love to cook, have them assemble a simple themed menu early in the week and make a list of what you need to get," he says. "They can really act as executive chefs for the dinner, and cooking is a great life skill for all kids to have," Rabbi Shmuley says.
- Teenagers can help plan meals, and if you're thinking of inviting people over, they can plan who's coming over, Rabbi Shmuley says. "They can also coordinate the cooking and cleanup and supervise their younger siblings in the kitchen," he says. "If they have some cooking skills to offer, they can teach their little brothers and sisters what they know."