How to teach math & reading to Toddlers and Preschoolers with a recipe magazine

Ever wonder how to entertain or teach your kid without having to buy stuff? Just go to the grocery store! Most likely you’ll find some kind of flier or recipe magazine that you can use like the ones in this picture from my local grocery store.


There are all kinds of new things to talk about in one of these books. From the food to the colors to a plan on what to make for your next meal.


Involving your kids in casual conversations like this shows that we read more than just children’s books. Reading is everywhere! We read to understand things, and read to cook!


It really does help them develop a deeper understanding of the English language because you use a lot of describing words to point out what things look like or the ingredients or steps it takes to make something.


Even with a toddler this sets up some connections to time and critical thinking skills.


For example:

First let’s pick something to make.

Then, let’s go to the store to buy it.

Next, let’s cook it.

And last we’ll eat it.


As they become preschoolers you change this language to using ordinal numbers so they get more comfortable with words like first, second, third and fourth. And you can get them more involved in all of the steps that go along with it.


For instance, before going to the store, get your child involved in writing the shopping list. Check out this blog for easy tips and more information on how to get them more involved in that.


Did you know there are also tons of literacy and math skills you can work on while looking through these magazines?


Just look at this delicious pancake page:


There are tons of giant capitalized letters you can reference. Go on a letter hunt, or see if you can find your child’s name, or practice tracing the letter with a finger or a marker.


And, on this meatball page the steps are all laid out in a number sequence, so you can point them out or encourage your child to count or point to a specific number.


And don’t forget, you can also count things in the book like how many meatballs they see to practice things like one-to-one correspondence.


To learn more check out this video where Anita models some more ideas on how to use a recipe magazine.


For other fun ideas and activities use the search feature in our blog or watch this video.