Pancake Day, or Shrove Tuesday, is a feast day before the start of Lent on Ash Wednesday. It marks the start of the 40 days leading up to Easter and has become a popular day in the calendar for both adults and children! We have given some activity ideas below to try with your little one.
One of the most popular activities surrounding Pancake Day is the pancake race! The tradition started in 1445 when a housewife was so busy making pancakes that she forgot the time until she heard the church bells ringing! She then raced out of the house to the church, whilst still carrying her frying pan and pancake, tossing it to prevent it from burning!
Fast forward a few hundred years, and the pancake race is now a popular activity. Children of all ages can get involved, either with homemade cardboard ‘pans’ or with toy kitchen equipment. Practising tossing pancakes is a great activity for hand-eye coordination, as well as endless fun trying to catch them!
One of the simplest craft activities you do can around pancakes is with paper and card and other craft materials you might have at home. Simply cut a circle of brown paper or card, and then use an array of craft materials to create a rainbow of toppings. Talk to your little one about what they’re creating, help them with cutting out different shapes and talk about the colours and textures they’re using.
From counting pancakes themselves to numbering pancakes and stacking them in numerical order, there’s a host of mathematical activities that pancakes can assist with. Older children can even cut pancakes (cardboard or otherwise!) into wedges and learn about percentages, or even help in working out the weight of ingredients needed if you need to double the recipe, for example. Who knew pancakes could be so educational?
When it comes to making your own pancakes at home, the world really is your oyster! It’s easy to create allergy-free pancakes too, and there are a number of recipes you can find online for the batter.
Decide with your little one whether or not you want to make sweet or savoury pancakes, and then it is personal preference on whether to make a thin base or more of an American-style scotch pancake.
Will you incorporate fruit, chocolate, oats or cheese into the batter itself, or will you mainly focus on toppings? Maybe a mixture of both! Pancakes are a wonderful reason to get creative with flavours, and your little ones will love to get involved in the mixing of ingredients and tasting their creations.