The Little Red Hen & a baking lesson w/ Grammie Louise

Today’s baking lesson was led by Grace’s Grammie Louise (Louise Murphy). Grammie began the lesson by explaining to the children what bread is made of – wheat. And she continued with a story about how wheat is grown and how bread is made. She also read “The Little Red Hen”, which is a much beloved children’s story.

The children were then each assigned a table (with a teacher supervising) that contained all the necessary ingredients and utensils – Water, oil, eggs, salt, sugar, yeast, and bread flour. Every child was given an opportunity to pour water, yeast, salt and sugar into a large bowl. Next they were able to crack an egg and pour it into the dough mix. After mixing all the ingredients, the teachers added the appropriate amount of flour – and voila! The children were were now looking at the beginning of bread – a sticky dough. The children were then given their own piece of dough to knead – I think they loved that part the best!!

Grammie Louise then covered each bowl of dough and allowed the dough to rise. Each child then placed a piece of dough into their own mini bread pan. Everyone received a mini bread loaf to take home and enjoy. A BIG THANK YOU to Louise Murphy for taking the time to prepare such an amazing hands on baking lesson for the children!

 Baking with young children is an excellent hands on learning experience. Many concepts can be taught in the kitchen cooking =

1.) Counting – Counting out the the number of ingredients in the recipe. Measuring the correct amount of ingredients to add to the mixture.

2.) Science – Cooking and baking is science. When the children add ingredients and bake bread, they are watching a transformation of sorts. Many things become one when you add heat from the oven.

3.) Fine motor skills – Mixing, kneading, cracking eggs, pouring water, etc. are all fine motor skills. By helping in the kitchen , the children are given numerous opportunities to practice and perfect these skills.

4.) Patience & taking turns Cooking takes a fair amount of waiting for your turn. This is another opportunity for children to learn patience and taking turns.

5.) Teamwork  Just like the story of the “Little Red Hen”, when everyone contributes and works hard towards a common goal (teamwork) everyone can enjoy the fruits of their labor.