A Family of Little Chefs

The Little Chef Technique has been used on Supernanny to help engage fussy eaters in cooking, while using this technique with older brothers and sisters can encourage teamwork as they pull the meal together...

As a version of the Shared Chore Technique, preparing a meal together can encourage the kind of teamwork needed between siblings who are often rivals.

Involve your children in cooking a meal

  • Tell your children they're going to help you to cook dinner.
  • Resign yourself to the mess so you can all stay relaxed! Try on some aprons and face-paint little chef-moustaches on you and your helpers.
  • Split the chores so the eldest is doing the carrying, the cutting, writing the menu and name plates, and the younger is supervised by you, helping grate cheese or wash carrots.
  • Heap your children with praise for their efforts, give them each a special ‘tasting spoon’ and get them to sample the food as it’s being cooked.
  • Sit down and eat together as a family. Even if your fussy eaters won’t eat this time, don’t focus on the negative, see if you can get them to take just one mouthful. Credit each sibling for their part in a good job!

What else might help?

You’ll find further hints and tips in coping with fussy eaters on other parts of the Supernanny website. It may take a while to reverse bad eating habits, but it’s important to be consistent in your approach. The shared chore/play technique can also help bond quarrelsome siblings.


Related links

  • TV Clip - Good Eating Technique: Giving Andrew praise for eating four mouthfuls of his dinner turns out to be a much more successful way to get him eating than telling him off.
  • Shared Chore Technique: As seen on the show, Supernanny’s techniques aim to discourage sibling rivalry by showing the kids they can get along together (sometimes!)…
  • Shared Play Technique: you’re fed up of hearing the same old squabbles between your kids, encourage a bit of teamwork with the Shared Play Technique’, used on the show to get siblings working together towards a common goal…
  • The Little Chef Technique: The Little Chef Technique engages children in mealtimes and encourages them to try different sorts of food…

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