|Charlotte age 14 canning apple butter|
|Always practice cleanliness while canning.|
It wasn't a conscience decision to teach my children the art of preserving. It just sort of happened and now I realize what a great skill it was that they have acquired.
Since it wasn't a conscience decision on my part I had to think back. I also had to question my children. How did their skill develop and at what ages did I start allowing them to do more and me less?
First, let me start with saying: allow your children to surround you in the kitchen. DO NOT KICK THEM OUT SO YOU CAN DO THINGS EASIER. Even as babies allow them to watch you and play with flour or dough or the pots and pans.
Here are a list of ages and jobs I think you can allow your children to do to introduce your children them to canning. *
2 yrs. old and up - Take them produce picking. Either in the garden or a Pick your own trip. Let your children always know where there food comes from . . . they are more likely to eat these healthy foods. Teach them the importance of hand washing.
4 yrs. old/5 yrs. old and up - Allow them to rinse the fruit out. Wipe the counter. Help you pour cool ingredients into pots. Teach them the importance of cleanliness.
6 yrs. old/7 yrs. old and up - Peeling, sorting, rinsing. Assist with stirring. Wiping the tops of the canning jars. Observe the full canning process. Teach them importance of safety and cleanliness.
8 yrs. old. to 11. yrs old and up- Cutting the produce. Actually making the recipe to be canned. Stirring. Assisting parent with preparing the canning area. Allowing them to fill the cans. Remember you are dealing with boiling water so please take caution when allowing them to help. Remind them to be really careful. Review the importance of safety and cleanliness.
* REMEMBER YOU KNOW YOUR CHILD BETTER THAN I DO. THESE AGES ARE JUST WHAT I DID WITH MY CHILDREN. AND NOT ALL MY CHILDREN WERE READY AT THE SAME AGES. KNOW WHAT YOUR CHILD IS CAPABLE OF AND USE YOUR BEST JUDGEMENT.