This afternoon I invited Nick to help me make a chicken casserole for supper (not that he will eat it!). It has been an age since we last cooked together and I had forgotten that the simple act of preparing food is a fabulous opportunity for me to guide Nick. Cooking is an activity that he feels comfortable with and he is receptive to little challenges and new experiences.
We spent a good twenty minutes cooking the chicken and preparing the sauce. I am always astounded at the amount of time that he remains engaged with me and with what we are doing. I can't help comparing today's success to his lack of interest during the early days of RDI.
Twenty minutes of video footage is way too much to share, therefore it took me a while to decide on what segment to use for this post. I eventually decided on the following piece of footage as I feel that it shows
I realise it looks odd that I have placed the casserole dish far away from the actual frying pan, however, there is a method to my madness! I want to add the extra challenge of carrying the chicken across a large open space. It slows down the pace of the activity and offers Nick further opportunities to motor plan and think about what is happening and what to do next.
My mind is also working overtime, I am continuously planning and reassessing on how to scaffold the situation and think of ways in which I can guide Nick. As with any of our activities, I want him to make his own decisions and be proactive in his approach without me telling him what to do every five seconds.
By the time we got to the end of transferring the chicken, Nick was using the tongs with confidence and also holding the chicken with enough control in order to carry it from the pan to the casserole dish without dropping it. He is learning from experience.
As for me, I like being a mindful parent and guiding Nick the RDI way. For sure, I am not perfect, however, I am also learning from experience!