This post on the top 10 appliances you need to teach your kids how to use is sponsored by P.C. Richard & Son, a family owned and operated appliance, electronics and mattresses store. All thoughts are my own.
It has been a couple of years since we packed up the van and dropped my oldest daughter off at her first college apartment. She’s now on apartment #4 and she’s getting ready to be married in just a few months (yes, you read that right. Married. My daughter!).
While daughter #1 is preparing for this new stage of life, daughter #2 is also getting ready for changes as she selects the colleges she’d like to apply to attend. Big changes are happening in our family in the coming year!
As each of my kids has gotten older and has prepared to live as independent adults, I have contemplated the responsibility we have as parents to teach them so many things. One of the things I’ve always considered important to teach my kids is how to confidently function in the kitchen, and so much of that independence comes in knowing how to use the kitchen appliances, large and small. I love cooking with kids but I love even MORE that my kids can cook and actually HELP me in the kitchen. I can call home while I’m out and have my 12-year-old start the rice cooker or have my 10-year-old load the dishwasher.
Here are the 10 appliances we’ve deemed the most important for kids to know how to use before they move out. Your list might be slightly different (ie, we don’t drink coffee, so we aren’t teaching our kids how to use a coffee maker, but that might be an important one for your family!).
What would you add to this list?
10 Appliances You Need to Teach Your Kids How to Use
- Microwave oven: The microwave seems like a simple appliance, but kids need to be taught appropriate times and temperatures for reheating, defrosting, and even popcorn-making (that’s an important one!). I also firmly believe that everyone, husbands included, need to know how to properly cover foods so that the interior is not covered with splatters of food.
- Toaster: Do your kids know how to start and stop the toaster and how to remove a piece of bread that has gotten stuck?
- Blender: We make a lot of smoothies at our house, so we’ve taught our kids how to add the right amounts of ingredients and liquids so that they get the perfect blend. It’s also important to teach them how to properly clean the blenders between uses.
- Hand mixer: My kids love to use the hand mixer for making things like pancakes, cupcakes, and…cakes. Do you see the trend here? yes, the hand mixer is an important small appliance to know how to use! It’s critical that they know how to hold the mixer in the bowl and how to insert and remove the beaters properly.
- Stand mixer: The stand mixer tends to be used for more heavy duty mixing, but it is just as important in our house. I’ve taught my kids which attachments to use for each use (ie, when to use the bread hook, the whisk, or the paddle).
- Rice cooker: We make rice a few times a week, and I frequently call home to have someone put a pot of rice on while I’m out running kids everywhere. I laughed one time when my husband had no idea how to work the rice cooker so I told him to go ask one of the kids.
- Slow cooker: I love to cook in my crock pot! And they are one of the easiest and most kid-friendly appliances for kids to learn how to use to make full meals.
- Dishwasher: We go through a LOT of dishes in our big family, so my kids learn how to empty, load, and start the dishwasher from a very early age.
- Cook top stove: The stove is one of the most important appliances in the kitchen, but it is also one of the more dangerous, so I recommend parents letting their kids work side-by-side with them while they cook so that they can learn how to use it, what temperatures are appropriate for their cooking needs, and what pans to use on which burners. They also need to learn a healthy respect for the dangers of hot burners.
- Oven: Just like the stove, the oven is very important to learn how to use, but almost just as critical is to teach kids to know how to handle themselves safely around the oven.
Note: while the date that the kids move out of the house and into their first apartment is certainly a good “target date,” I recommend that parents don’t wait until their kids are about to leave to teach them how to use the appliances in the kitchen. Instead, I’ve taught my kids how to use each of these appliances as soon as I could. By the time my kids leave for college, they will have had years of experience so that using them in their own apartments will be second nature.
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