Monday, January 03, 2011

Playing Chopsticks

Having difficulty convincing your child to eat their vegetables? Frustrated by the constant appearance of broccoli on your wallpaper? Are your threats of boarding school or millitary academy laughed off by your impudent 2 year old? Then teach them to use chopsticks!

It's a win-win situation for all involved. The child gets to play with their food; parent/s see the child refining their motor skills, and through exposure to something quite unique, the world may even end up with one less philistine roaming its surface.

Pictured above is Cohen (3), practising on some grapes, frozen peas and corn. Later, he was seen experimenting on blocks, toy cars and mummy's hair accessories.

Making the task of learning how to use chopsticks easier is this children's training set I found in a store in town recently - the design is ingenious. There are three rings, two of which accomodate the middle and index fingers, with a larger ring on the bottom stick for the thumb. Connecting the chopsticks is a hinge (the bird) which when in use allows only the top stick to move. The tips are rounded, providing more surface area for picking up food, as well as eliminating sharp, stabby bits. The whole unit is quite hefty and solid, made with dishwasher-safe, high grade plastic.

They are an unashamedly cool thing! Here he comes, in for the attack, like Luke Skywalker's X-wing hurtling down the Death Star's trench!

Steady...steady... The index and middle fingers do most of the work, while the bottom chopstick remains relatively still (and yes, there is some finger slippage).

Kerplunk! Yaaaay!

By all accounts, Cohen's quite taken with his new acquisition, carting it with him around town. Introducing chopsticks to meal times can only make the dining experience more enjoyable, for both parents and children. Whatever kind you use, fun will inevitably ensue. Not sure how to use them? Check the links at the end of the post.

A big thank you (and tickles) to Cohen, Haley (Cohen's mum) and Stacey :)

Linky Goodness:
  • Want to learn how to use chopsticks? Google is your friend click ;Youtube, too click
  • Training Chopsticks (Australia) - home of this great tool (adult models available as well) click
  • Wikipedia's page on chopsticks  - an absolute mine of information click
  • Chopsticks in the news: China declares war on disposable chopsticks click


Alessandra said...

:-) never seen a tool like that!
My kids got lots of kids/ chopstick set from Japanese friends, but none were attached or with handles...

Stil, they learned and golly they like to show off to adults!!! Yep, they love eating with chopsticks, a treat for them... in fact they think that it is easier than holding fork and knife!

Happy New Year


Kathleen said...

Where did you get those fabulous chopsticks, Nigel? I must have some for my little guy - we eat with chopsticks several times a week round here, and he is very determined indeed to join us :)

Anonymous said...

Those chopsticks are way cool! It's random there's a bird wearing glasses on the top of them, but it just adds to their appeal.

Anonymous said...

I wanted some myself but hubby didnt look too impressed when I suggested it.

Nigel Olsen said...

Alli - Happy new year! Bugger him, grab some!

Anon - Absolutely, very kid-oriented.

Kathleen - I bought them at a specialist toy store of all places, here in Napier. You can buy the exact same kind at the website on the second link I have above.

Alessandra - I know what you mean! Cohen loves using them & looks quite proud with himself :)