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Cooking Safely With Children

Cooking with your child can be a wonderful tradition. But before you team up with your little ones, follow these precautions, from the National SAFE KIDS Campaign in Washington, DC:

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  • Keep a close eye on your child at all times when she's in the kitchen, even when she's simply watching you do the work.
  • Never hold your child while cooking; doing so can allow her to reach dangerous electrical appliances and hot cookware.
  • Keep hot foods and liquids away from the edges of counters and tables to make sure your child doesn't pull them down.
  • Put pans on back burners, and turn all pot handles toward the back of the stove so your child can't reach them.
  • Don't let kids under 10 handle the stove, electrical appliances, sharp utensils, or hot dishes. Instead, give them safer tasks such as washing fruits and vegetables and stirring ingredients in a bowl.
  • Have a fire extinguisher nearby and emergency phone numbers posted in a conspicuous place so you can make calls quickly.

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Copyright © 2001. Reprinted with permission from the December/January 2001 issue of Child magazine.