Conducting Risk Assessments for Cooking Activities
Did you know?
According to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, the largest number of accidents involving children happen in the living/dining room. However, the most serious accidents happen in the kitchen and on the stairs. Every year more than 67,000 children experience an accident in the kitchen - 43,000 of these are aged between 0-4 years.
If you haven’t already, read That Nursery Life’s article on How To Risk Assess Activities in Your Setting.
- Hot surfaces (hobs, pans, oven trays, kettles) – risk of burns or scalds
- Sharp objects (knives, scissors) – risk of cuts
- Food allergies (gluten, nuts, eggs, milk) – risk of allergic reaction
- Cleaning agents (disinfectant, soap) – risk of skin irritation, eye irritation or poisoning if consumed
- Electricity (electrical devices, plug sockets, broken wires) – risk of electrocution
- Glass items (bowls, drinking glasses) – risk of being dropped and smashing, resulting in cuts
- Machinery (mixers) – risk of trapped hair or fingers
- Spills (food, liquid) – risk of tripping or slipping
- Raw food (eggs) – risk of food poisoning if consumed
As well as carrying out your own risk assessment:
- Identifying hazards
- Deciding who is at risk
- Evaluating risks and deciding on precautions
- Recording and implementing your findings
It may be helpful for both you and your early years to go through a risk assessment together, making children aware of the risks and how to avoid injuries or accidents when carrying out the activity. Take a look at TNL’s article, How To: Involve Children in Risk Assessments, for a guide on how to do this.
Taking these precautionary steps will ensure you are in the best position to provide a fun, educational and, most importantly, safe cooking activity for the children in your setting.
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