Kids and Knives

I saw this picture on the internet about age appropriate chores for children and i noticed some chores had to do with sharp objects. I tried to remember what age I was when my mother first started trying to teach me how to cook. I was about seven years old when she gave me a tuber of yam to peel. I can tell you that it ended hilariously, I managed to peel the yam but i rubbed it across my skin so much that i was so itchy. I had to shower with disinfectant and even had to take an antihistamine. I learnt a valuable lesson, yam skins and human skins (at least mine) don't mix.

list chores for different ages for Kids

How do you feel about children (Kids) using knives?

What is the greatest risk — children using knives or children not using knives? Does the risk lie in teaching a child the skills required to use a knife, or is the risk in not allowing a child to use a knife and denying them important life skills?

I think parents can start teaching with a butter knife (or other dull round tipped knife and also vegetable choppers) to cut something soft like a banana.

 As the child gets older, the knife gets sharper and the food gets harder or more difficult to cut. I advocate for real knives and real food, however starting with a soft food and a dull knife allows for the child to develop their skills gradually.

It’s not that I believe children should be doing adult work; it’s that I believe children are capable and for them it can be incredibly empowering. Children need risk. Risk challenges them and keeps them alert; it makes them responsive and teaches consequences. However parents are often so afraid, it is to the detriment of their children.

Children need to learn new skills, real life skills. Once they are capable in one area, they will have the confidence to work and excel in other areas. In the society we find ourselves it is best to equip them for challenges.

If taught with care and patience children can become very capable and skilled. Using a knife can improve hand control. It can build hand and arm strength and fine motor skills.

With the same of amount of attention, they can also learn to use a grater or perhaps even a peeler.

Do you allow your children to use a knife? At what age did you teach them how to use it?