It’s said that the kitchen is the heart of the home. If you’re a parent who spends any time there, there’s a high likelihood you’ve had offers to help from little hands which are also near and dear to your heart. From helping crack eggs to playing drums on the floor with pans, children love feeling like they’re part of cooking meals. In fact, this CBS News story shared research results showed that getting kids involved in the kitchen may teach them to have healthier eating habits. So, what better gift to give your children than their very own DIY play kitchen?
What Features Make Up a DIY Kids’ Kitchen?
The main fun of a children’s DIY kitchen is letting your little ones feel like they are mimicking your frequent activities in the kitchen. This could mean creating cooktop for sautéing make-believe onions, a counter and cutting board for chopping pretend carrots, or even their own sink for cleaning up the dishes they use. They can blow bubbles into their sink to replicate soap!
Creating a Kid-Friendly Kitchen Play Space
Furniture for the Foundation
By shopping online or in-person in thrift stops or garage sales, you can find some very affordable, used furniture as the foundation of your play kitchen. For example, a coffee table, nightstand or low entertainment center can easily become a cooktop! Its doors or drawers can double as cupboards or even an oven. Use our recipe to bake a homemade pizza with your little one, and next thing you know, they’ll be making their own version in their kitchenita! You can even remove the top shelf to help make the center more height-appropriate for your child and get a double win by reattaching it to create a faux backsplash.
Giving It That ‘Kitchen-esque’ Appearance
Let’s say you find an old 1980’s style brown laminate entertainment center at a consignment shop for a steal, but your kitchen cabinets are chic white. Give that piece a fresh coat of paint to help make it feel real! Next, you can shop with construction outlets and overstock, where they sell extra hardware pieces. Or, ask a friend to donate their old pieces from a remodel. You can find cheap faucets and cabinet handles to add to the scene. Finally, add the stovetop burners. Trace circles on pine wood slabs and use your favorite power tool to slice. Then, paint with either black paint or chalkboard paint. Keep in mind whether you have a little one that may try to lick those stovetops when choosing paint – kid-safe! Then attach well with either bolts or cement glue.
Add the Accessories
Don’t forget the details! Have some old pans or skillets you want to replace? Well, treat yourself, and help your little one stock up on their essentials. Old mixing bowls, wooden spoons and hanging baskets are great too! You can find a great deal on kid-safe plastic cooking utensils online as well. Looking for other ideas? Try your local teaching stores. They offer cost-effective products to help instructors enhance their classrooms’ learning centers with engagement activities. Practicing with bowls and utensils can help develop children’s gross and fine motor skills, along with their sense of balance. During the spring, let them lead the charge using their kitchen area to decorate Easter eggs. Check out our blog for fun tips!
Looking for More Ideas?
Are you looking for more activities to help your children feel part of the household operations? Check out this blog by our fellow Neighborly brand, Window Genie with information on Kid Friendly Cleaning Hacks. Let your children help make that glass shine without worrying about their exposure to chemicals.
Having Trouble With the Grown-Up Kitchen?
If you’re tempted to borrow your child’s play stove because yours is on the fritz, it may be time to call in reinforcements. Click here to schedule an appointment with a Mr. Appliance service professional at a time convenient for you using our online calendar.