My son and I recently decided to have an “eggcellent” adventure! He loves to help me cook and, although I encourage him to get messy whenever possible, certain rules have to apply when we’re in the kitchen. What kid doesn’t love to crack eggs? But, as much as I’d love to trust him with this task, having him help me with adding eggs to a recipe often ends up with most of the whites on the countertop or too many shells to have to extract.
Now to some, this may seem gross, but to my two-year old, this was a real treat. I had a carton of eggs that had reached its expiration date. Instead of throwing them out, I decided to let him go to town! I placed him in the bathtub in only a diaper with a glass bowl, a whisk, some measuring cups, and about a half-dozen eggs.
First, we counted the eggs. Then we discussed the differences between raw and hard-boiled eggs. We shook them, spun them, and rolled them around. He couldn’t wait to get “crackin’!” He tapped the egg on the side of the bowl ever so gently. Then, he realized that he needed some more oomph and was so excited when the shell finally broke. He tried to catch the egg as it dripped into the bowl and felt the different textures of the white and the yolk as they slipped through his fingers. He had lots of fun trying to pick up the yolk so he could squish it. He mixed, he scooped, and he dumped – first into the big bowl and then into all twelve slots in the empty carton. He explored the differences between the eggs when first cracked versus when they were scrambled and was curious as to why the eggs couldn’t be put back to their original form.
We also had a great time examining the shells. We noticed the different colors and textures on the inside and outside, but the most fun was had crushing the shells into a million tiny pieces. They were pretty much pulverized when he was done with them!
Before it was time to clean up, the eggs were used to paint the shower walls. He also decided to paint his arms and legs. He was fascinated when the egg on his skin began to dry. At this point, he decided he was done being messy and that it was time to wash it off. We picked up the bowl of eggs, our tools, and as many of the shells as possible. The shower went on and the walls, the bath mat, and my son were all hosed down. Although this might be considered a weird activity, he learned a lot, the eggs didn’t go to waste, and it satisfied his curiosity.
On another note, we have started making a lot more hard-boiled eggs (and then egg salad) in our house. It’s a cooking activity we can do together, my son loves to crack, peel, slice, and chop the eggs and, hey, we get a few lunches out of it!
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