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Using Real Knives In Cooking Activity


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Hi

 

I have been reading the thread on children's safety knives (eg from 'Pampered Chef ''). We are considering doing a cooking activity in small adult led groups (max 4 children) (reception age) where the children will use real knives, graters and peelers to prepare vegetables for cooking. Has anyone got any advice on the use of these tools including sharp 'real' knives?

 

I have read advice online which states its a great idea for children to use real tools and become aware of the risks and I have also read that sharp knives are less dangerous than blunt one and other advice which says only let young children use plastic knives.

 

Advice gratefully received!

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Welcome to the Forum, roadrunner55!

 

I'd always go for the real option - children should have access to the right tools for a job, I think. After all have you tried to chop a potato or an apple with a plastic knife?

 

You need a clear risk assessment of course, and the children will need to be taught how to use the tools safely, but I'd say go ahead and use real tools for real jobs.

 

Maz

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I have always used real knives with the children for this kind of activity, much to staff and parents 'horror' ..

 

Staff eventually became used to it but I still had some parents who were 'shocked' that I allowed them to use kitchen knives .. one parent even said they didn't allow a knife or fork for the child to use to eat with ( i worked with 3 -5 yr olds. FS1)

 

I made sure they were well supervised and taught how to use the knives.. I usually woked 1 adult to 2 children but the older ones I did find could manage in larger groups

 

the biggest thing is to ensure the knives are sharp enough to cut.. more accidents happen with a blunt knife than a sharp one.. and grated knuckles were the biggest injury for us as they became enthusiastic, I ended up finding a box one with a guard to hold the item think didn't cost much but no more blood in the soup!

 

Ours found peelers impossible to use... so we scrubbed the veg with a scourer instead..

 

Inge

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Guest LornaW

On a visit to Norway last October the children were taught to use real knives and real saws it was fantastic.

 

They also used fires and cooked outside see pics so roadrunner55 go for it the children will learn so much!

 

Lorna

post-9053-1271574787.jpg

post-9053-1271574794.jpg

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there is a video clip somewhere for children to watch showing how to hold and cut correctly.

 

i will see if i can find it

 

check out the Let's Get Cooking website too

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i found the best grater was one from ikea which fits on top of a container(to hold the cheese etc) i found some ofsted approved knives (!) which have small serations and are rounded at the end, they have short handles for small hands and an enlarged bridge to make it easier to hold. I was a bit concerned about the video i would never point the knife towards my palm and i certainly would not teach my children to do that! ( i use to work in catering!)

Have fun and teach a skill at a time - i tend to work 1:1 or 2 to start with only when i know they can do it do i increase this. ( 3-5 yr olds :o )

p.s am at a forest school site in a couple of weeks and we are cooking over real fires!

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Hi

 

We use real knives at school. I send recipes to our link schools & we share the experiences with our children.

 

I've attached a photo of a cookery lesson in our link school in Zambia They used charcoal which they put on the braziers as fire. Over 700 people took part in this activity. It's just fantastic to see. I don't think I'd ever be brave enough to try this in the uk. I was considering using my big George Forman grill in our :o playground to make kebabs with the kids, but its not the same, he, he.

post-18910-1271971483_thumb.jpg

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we always use real tools, they support high quailty experiences for children. we have real knifes for children to use as well as daily access to real wood work bench with real saws, drills, screw drivers etc. we also have free access to real cutlery knifes in the home corner for children to cut up real veg for role playing with. i am a real fan of real life expereinces.

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We have just done cooking training with the Food for Life people for cooking in schools. They recommended for Reception teaching using a bridge cutting technqiues using a small sharp knife with a serrated blade and to saw (like Bob the Builder).

They recommended using cherry tomatoes or other small food to use - bigger food needs to be choppped up into smaller pieces first for small hands. They said they get more injuries from peelers and graters than knives and don't recommend them until KS2. Also soft food is important for Reception kids as things like apples etc. are too hard.

 

http://www.focusonfood.org/home.html

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