Functional kitchen space

 

Ella's functional kitchen is a new addition to our kitchen/family room space, and we are just loving the independence it has provided our sweet girl. If you haven't seen this trend before, I encourage you to look up the #functionalkitchen on Instagram and your mind will be blown how creative some parents can be. Like many other Montessori parents, we decided to convert the IKEA Duktig kitchen into Ella's own functional space.

Here at Ella's kitchen, she can get herself a drink of water, wash her hands, 'wash' her dishes, prepare snacks and clean up after herself. She is still getting used to this new area of hers, and sometimes still goes to her old cupboard looking for her cups or plates before remembering that they have moved locations. 



Here is Ella slicing an apple for a snack. She still can't use an apple slicer independently, but she's great at lining it up and then I help her push it down. 



This is Ella preparing some strawberries for a snack. She rinsed them at her sink and used her chopper to cut them up all by herself. I am always present when she uses her chopper, because even though it's not that sharp, I still don't want her to hurt herself. 



Ella's kitchen has an area for kitchen rags and sponges, which she uses to clean up her own spills. She also has her own little broom and dustpan where she can sweep up spills if she needs to. The other day she dropped a noodle during lunch and ran over to her broom to sweep it up. She successful swept it up and even went over to the trash to dump it out. I couldn't believe it! 


Here's a little tour of the inside, so you can see where and how we store her things! Links to all of our favorite products are at the bottom of today's post! :)


 

On one side of the cabinet is where we store her glasses, silverware, plates and bowls. We use a mix of plastic and real ceramic/glassware. Ella prefers to use the plastic plates, so that's what we let her use. She's not as picky with her glasses and bowls. 

On the other side of the cabinet we store her kitchen tools, snacks and extra rags for spills. 

Here are some of her personal kitchen tools:


Tongs, a whisk, a rubber spoon, a rubber spatula, a spreader knife and a chopper.



She also has an apple slicer, a mini juicer, an egg slicer and a little ceramic pouring vessel.



We keep a variety of snacks in her kitchen, but during the day I will usually set them on top of her kitchen because I find she's more likely to help herself vs ask when she can see them as opposed to them being inside the cupboard. 



On the top of her kitchen, I use two miniature cutting boards to cover up what would be the pretend kitchen burners. We also keep her water dispenser filled with fresh water. She is at an age now where she knows not to over fill the sink and make too much of a mess, which is nice. She also has her own little scrubber if she wants to pretend to wash her dishes. 


I am so happy we decided to make this little space for Ella. She enjoys it and I enjoy it for her.  Go here to see some of our favorite toddler sized practical life materials if you're interested in getting your toddler involved in the kitchen!


-Ashley & Ella
xoxo


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