Don't Just Play "Kitchen", Play "Restaurant"!

A good round of playing "Kitchen" is always good for the soul. Why not change it up a little and play "Restaurant". You and your child will have a blast and they will learn a little something along the way - dramatic play is important to a child's development. Children express ideas, thoughts, and language in dramatic play that is quite unlike other times during their day. Really and truly, the only thing you need for dramatic play is your imagination. However, being a former actress myself, I appreciate a good prop here and there. So, I took the liberty to slip a few things into my kidlet's kitchen area that I thought might make our "Restaurant" playing a little more interesting.

-Menu: printed on paper, decorated with stickers, and detailed bargain pricing like hamburgers for one dollar!

- Apron: one of my half aprons from my craft supply drawer ( a tea towel and some ribbon would do the trick too!)

- Mini clipboard and pencil: For taking orders of course (I got mine at the Dollar Tree)!

- Play Money: We don't have play money, so I scrawled "$1" on a few strips of copier paper. It served the purpose. You could also fashion "charge cards" to make it more modern. :)

Take your kidlets on a veritable journey through having a meal "out on the town":

Ask to be seated at your table.
Mention you "heard the food was good here".
Ask "What's the Special today?"
Ask for items "on the side".
Compliment the chef on the food's delicious taste.
Pay with cash or charge...
Don't forget to leave a tip!

Most of all, have fun!


  1. We love playing in her kitchen and will try out the idea of a restuant. My oldest daughter used to love it so I beat her little sister will too. Thanks for the reminder!
    Serving With Love & Integrity,

  2. we did a version of this called mini cafe, when I was tutoring a friends son, the boys loved it and the got to eat real food too, I blogged about it here

  3. my 8 year old loves to do this, she wears her Lowes apron:-)- and takes orders and 'fills' them she has made menus efore too. It is a lot of fun and learning for sure.

  4. We just played restaurant the other day! It was great fun.

  5. My two littlest love to make food with play-doh and then yell, "Order Up!"

  6. my oldest started asking to play restaurant about a week ago. She used her sister's board books for menus, and took on teh role of the waitress that doesn't write orders down (lol) and took money from her cash register and actaully had baby sister cooking the food!! we had a blast

  7. My kids would LOVE this. :)

  8. I put together a kit along these lines for a niece a couple of Christmases ago. She loved it, and still plays with it.
    I personalized the menu to read Madison's Diner, and laminated them so they'd last longer.

  9. This is great- we played this as children all the time and even added another element: Hotel. We played hotel where we had everything- from a restaurant, to a video store, etc. It was one of our favorite things to play :)

  10. I love this! I think I'll save the idea for a Christmas gift (trying to do more homemade this year).

  11. Kiddo has always loved to play restaurant! He used to make us play it before dinner--of course the restaurant only served one dish those days!

  12. What a fun idea, I am sure your kidlets will have hours of fun!

  13. This brings back so many memories for me when I was younger. I would love to play "restaurant" when I was younger and would take orders from my family for lunch. I had my little pad and pencil. :)

  14. I love this ! I had student who was always playing waitress with a small magna doodle, it was a great way to have her learn to write letters, I would order various letters every day.

  15. We enjoy playing restaurant/chef. My 11 year old loves creating new dishes and serving us. Just found you and enjoying your blog
    Have a great weekend!

  16. That is such a fun idea. We've played store, but never restaurant.

    I tagged you for a fun game at my blog, go check it out :)