In Waldorf schools around the world, bread making is intentionally chosen as a weekly snack as it meets the children in so many different ways. We know that young children learn best through play, where they are able to fully engage all of their senses. Making bread is a sensory-rich activity that brings textures, smells and tastes all together. This organic experience in one that has the ability to engage, entice and ignite a sense of wonder in young children.
The experience of making bread also presents young children with a sense of interconnectedness. This comes from the grinding of the wheat to make flour and then the measuring and combining of warm water, yeast and oil to make a dough. Kneading the dough is where the real, hands-on fun begins. Here, children can feel the dough, form balls, or make their own creative shapes to be baked. As the bread bakes, the wonderful smell brings a sense of warmth and nurturing as well as anticipation. When the time comes for the children to sit down and enjoy the warm bread with their classmates, they feel a great sense of accomplishment, as they saw this process through, from start to finish. And it gets better. While you may not think of it this way, baking bread is science. It is a yummy, complicated science that combines elements of physics, botany, chemistry and biology.
Please take a moment to watch Ms. Olga make her delicious kindergarten bread recipe. Sing along and don't forget the honey butter!