Peanut Butter Cookies

by Mary Ann on May 24, 2010

Last night I went to make peanut butter cookies with some children that have become friends. They are 7, 4, and 2 and have a 4 year old cousin. This cooking lesson came on the heels of a very long day. We had planned it a week in advance and the kids were wired with anticipation. Yikes. They were full of energy and I was drained. But I am good with kid’s right. I do this kind of thing all the time. I can totally handle it.

We were going to video it and possibly put it on this blog. Not one thing went as planned. I had to take all the equipment and ingredients. I forgot the eggs and the cookie sheets. The kids started fighting right from the get go. I sat them all down and told them the few rules I have when I cook, you know, no fighting, take turns, and don’t criticize the other kids. They didn’t hear a WORD I SAID.

I briefly went into the living room to wait until they were ready to stop arguing with each other. I said “Call me when you are ready to cook.” About 5 minutes ticked by. They saw I was serious about the fighting and came and got me. We talked about ½, 1/3, and ¼ cups and how many of each made one cup. We talked about the teaspoons and tablespoons. We began measuring while I kept reminding them that they were in charge of themselves and not each other.

By the time we were through the two year old had tasted the shortening, one of the 4 year olds had been in the flour to her elbow, oatmeal was all over the table, the other 4 year old was eating the sugar. Ahhhhhhh. I could feel my frustration level rising. Eventually we were rolling balls of dough and flattening them on the pan…all except one of the 4 year olds. She was using the dough like play dough. I eventually broke my own rule about not meddling and parceled her dough out to everyone else so we could finish baking them. She was not a happy camper.

While the first batch was in the oven they all deserted me for the living room and mom who had some company. As I cleaned up the gigantic mess I thought about what I talk about on this blog all the time. Kids aren’t concerned with the outcome, the experience is what counts. Adults feel frustrated when they enter into a project with adult expectations and it doesn’t meet those expectations. What kids really want is your time and to know you cared enough to plan. Hmmmm. I felt the frustration going down.

About the time the first batch was done the kids were right back in the kitchen wanting to help take them off the pan. Very few made it off in one piece. In fact by the time they were all done we had a plate of very large crumbs and a kitchen full of happy kids. We sang a bunch of songs. While waiting for the cookies to bake, they got out paint and paper and made some beautiful pictures for me to take home. We were still friends despite my momentary frustration and rule breaking.

They are looking forward to my visit next Monday night. It’s going to be play dough!

I love them and they love me. The fact that we stuck with the project, well that was success to them and you know, to me too.

Possibly Related Posts:

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: