This week is week 2 of "Mommy Camp". Are you ready to join in? These themed weeks work well for summer, but can easily be tailored for homeschool lessons during the school year or given a Biblical twist for Vacation Bible School type weeks. The themes are simple, the crafts and activities are cheap and quick to put together and the idea is to give the smallest amount of structure to our days so we don't go insane and rip out each other's hair on rainy days or lounge around aimlessly outdoors on the nice ones.
This week? Chef Week.
Surprisingly, one of the favorite activities of the week turned out to be these little perler bead cupcakes, cookies, cakes and such. I bought a "culinary" tub and it included tons of the brownish beads (for chocolate chip cookies and such), the pinks and whites below (for cupcakes and such) and a brightly colored pack for sugar cookies and such (not pictured).
The kids simply place the beads on the provided pegboards and then you iron for
10-20 seconds on each side with the provided paper in between your iron and the beads.
They melt together into fun little plastic pieces (MAGIC in the kid's eyes) and the process of getting those tiny little beads onto the pegboards kept them busy for hours (literally hours over the course of a week) making them. They are STILL not bored by them which is my signal to put them away for a few weeks and break them out again for some more mommy quiet time!
Want to read about the Mommy Quiet Time tins? CLICK HERE!
Moving onto the rest of the week, we split our time between tasks that a chef, grocer and farmer would complete -- all in the overarching theme of food. Use your imagination, get the kids in the kitchen, in the garden and in the grocery store and get cooking!
Chef Week Ideas:
I split the week into three categories, all related to food production:
- Bake Cookies! Bake Bread! Make a Salad! Teach them how to cut with knives properly! COOK!
- Make Bead Fushion Baking Treats (the cupcake was the best and these kept them busy for HOURS)
- Break out cheap chef hats for an added bit of fun! (They only cost $1.27!)
- MAKE ICE CREAM! (It is SUMMER!)
- Go to the grocery store and visit the deli -- the meat counter -- the stock boys -- etc.
- Have kids pick ingredients for those above chef projects (cookies! salad! bread!)
- Create a Grocery Store (full tutorial HERE)
- Have kids draw grocery store tags (full tutorial HERE)
- Make aprons for all three professions (tutorial coming soon!)
- Show kids how to buy big backs of "seed" from the grocery store and use them for cooking AND growing. (Lentils, Limas, Fava Beans, Navy Beans -- any of the legumes in cheapo bags!)
Farmer or Gardener:
- Pick strawberries (or any berries!) out of the garden or at a Upick for that ice cream!
- Plant tomato plants, herbs and other easy to grow garden plants
- Plant large, quick seeds like beans and other legumes, sunflowers and peas
Below is a list of specific foods/plants that work well for kids to learn about. The first bullet point is for the grocer portion, the second for the chef and the third for the farmer/gardener.
- Buy an avocado at the Grocery Store -- discuss ripeness
- Show and let them peel the avocado for a salad or Guac
- Plant the seed afterwards to grow your own!
- Buy a pineapple at the Grocery Store -- discuss ripeness
- Show how to cut those pesky little brown pieces off of the fruit and use in fruit salad or cake!
- Plant the pineapple top afterwards to grow your own plant! (Full tutorial for growing a supermarket pineapple HERE)
- Pick out ginger at the grocery store, discussing the high price, but light weight of the root when buying
- Show how it must be peeled, talk about freezing ginger to preserve it.
- Plant the ginger root chunks afterwards to grow your own plant! (Full tutorial for growing your own ginger plant HERE)
- Pick out various types/colors of onions at the store.
- Discuss how to cook with various types, sweet vidalias baked whole with butter, white all purpose, red raw and tart!
- Plant the onion tops afterwards to grow your own plant! (Full tutorial for growing your own onions HERE)
Potato (easiest for growing your own!!)
- Pick out various types/colors of potatoes at the store.
- Discuss how to cook with various types, white for baking, red with skins on for mashed or salad, yellow and blue roasted/fried.
- Plant the potatoes with "eyes" afterwards to grow your own plants! (Full tutorial for growing your own potatoes HERE)
- Pick out various types/colors of peppers at the store.
- Discuss how to cook with various types and how different countries use different peppers.
- Plant the onion seeds in pots afterwards to grow your own pepper garden!
- Pick out various types/colors of flours and grains at the store.
- Discuss how to cook with various types, bread flour, whole wheat, Bulgar, etc.
- Plant some wheat seed or even birdseed to show how grains grow!
* We do NOT do ALL of these activities (we pick and choose!) and you shouldn't feel like you need to either! Pick and choose your favs!
For more summer mommy camp ideas, click the button below!
Did you miss the other posts in the CHEF WEEK Series?
Chef Hats and Aprons (coming soon on Crafts Unleashed!)