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Skills for Spreading with a Kitchen Knife

To begin:

  • Wash hands and clean the work surface
  • Gather materials and place to the left of your work area.
  • Various kitchen knives may be used depending on the skill level of your child
    (e.g. butter knife, a toy knife set, plastic utensils)

Contrast:

  • Using colored cutting boards that provide a contrast with the color of the food make it easier to see the food.
  • It can be very helpful to have both a light-colored cutting board such as white, and a dark colored board such as black.
    • For example, dark colored foods such as red peppers will have more color contrast on a white cutting board.
  • This also applies to your knife selection (e.g. Using a red knife on a white cutting board provides good contrast).

Spreading Skills:

  • Allow your child to explore their work area.
  • If containers such as peanut butter are too big for your child to hold, place peanut butter in a smaller container which they can open and hold (snap lid containers are great to use and easier to handle).
  • Allow your child to feel and explore how much peanut butter is on their knife.
  • With their non-dominant hand, position it in a “C” shape to hold the bread. By doing so, this prevents the bread from moving from side to side or up and down.
  • Begin by finding the top right corner of your bread with your knife. Sweep the peanut butter from the right side of your bread to left and back across. As you come back, drop down and sweep again in the same motion.
  • Have your child look and feel with their hands to see if the whole surface has been covered.
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