My kids have been switching their IKEA Duktig play kitchen around for a while now. They get behind it and use like a food stall, serving food from the “hatch”. Before that I had been starting to wonder if it was time for the play kitchen to go as they hadn’t played with it in ages. It takes up a fair amount of space too – though at least it isn’t a garish design.
IKEA Duktig Play Kitchen Hack
Their favourite versions of this game are pretending the kitchen is a cafe, coffee shop or ice-cream parlour. Over the summer I painted the back of the kitchen in black chalkboard paint so they could write signs and menus and draw pictures too. It is mostly my writing in the photos below though before you start to think the 5 year old is advanced.
One of her development areas was to use writing more in creative play so this activity helped with that. She also writes down menu orders on a notepad and the 3 year old pretends to do the same. There is a basic approach to numeracy in the games too with the use of the IKEA till and some play money (and other objects used as tokens).
I took photos of 3 of the play scenarios from over the summer. We do usually play this game indoors but the photos from outdoor play are much, much better (the play area is in desperate need of a lick of paint).
The Little Bakery
Things we used:
- Gingerbread people – the girls decorated “gingerbread” shapes cut out of cardboard
- Play dough birthday cakes – homemade play dough that they shaped into cupcakes
- Cake boxes that were leftover from birthdays
- Play food, plates, cups and a tea set (a mish mash of different sets)
- IKEA Duktig cash register & play money
- White apron (part of an Alice in Wonderland costume)
The Spaghetti Star Food Truck
We played this after going to the Enfield Food Festival where the girls had been inspired by a mix of making pasta necklaces and seeing the various food trucks and stands.
What we used:
- Spaghetti made out of yellow wool
- Toppings of either play food or pretend food cut out of paper (the girls decided on the ingredients)
- Toy pots, pans and serving utensils (mostly from the IKEA toy range again)
- Wooden bowls and cutlery from the kitchen cupboards and party supply box
- Toy cash register and play money
- Kids table and chairs
The Sweet Sweet Ice Cream Stand
The original and favourite version of the game! They used the tap as a pretend dispenser for the ice cream.
What we used:
- Cones made from brown cardboard
- Ball pit balls as ice-cream
- Display boxes from our craft cupboard
- Real ice cream scoop from our kitchen
- IKEA cash register and play money
They would like to do a pizza truck as the next version – I think we will take a similar approach to the spaghetti truck and fashion pizza boxes out of cardboard. I’m also wondering if the kitchen could also work as a puppet theatre though I would have to figure out what to do with the kitchen tap that would get in the way.
(In no way is this an ad for IKEA by the way, but we do like their toys and their kids craft bits are great too)!.