Help me do it myself!

Montessori kitchen kit for children

Education and Civic engagement

The kit teaches children DIY skills.

Children between three and six years, acquire skills and an increasing desire to express them, becoming the centre of space and everyday actions. They want to set the table, cook, cut, grate, squeeze and carry out “grown-up” activities. This is how real objects and child-friendly kits help children “make their own” healthy food and educates them about taste and variety.

The kit was co-designed by OpenDot, Montessori a casa, Associazionedidee, Erika Sartori and Alce Nero, to understand how children relate to the cooking world, and highlight their time and space, dispelling certain prejudices about the inability of young children to participate in culinary preparations.

Activities and educational tools

Kits were built around four key moments of the day: breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner. Each moment was matched to a season, allowing children to play and learn about the seasonality and supply chain of some Alce Nero products, such as oil, honey, juice and biscuits.

Teaching-learning is based on some of Maria Montessori's principles: waiting, the importance of doing, the value of time, participation and awareness, in relation to the Alce Nero’s philosophy. We start by composing the supply chain using the wooden tiles and matching products to the corresponding season, and then move on to the culinary preparation. Children cut, mix, pound, peel, drain, spread and prepare snacks to share with their families.

This is accompanied by a “child development strip in the kitchen”, which analyses the growth process in terms of nutrition, autonomy, environment, symbolic activities and play.

Case study