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What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Kids Baking Championship is a cooking competition that challenges eight tweens to a series of challenges in the kitchen, putting their creativity, determination, and ability to handle pressure situations to the test. What stands out about this competition is its cordiality; the contestants are polite to each other, the judges are encouraging even in their criticism, and the kids handle every circumstance with a positive attitude. There are some tears in defeat, but even those who are eliminated keep the value of the experience in perspective. This is a great show to watch with your kids, even if baking's not their thing, as it centers on accomplished tweens working hard to fulfill their dreams.
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What's the story?
Eight of the country's most talented young bakers match wits in the kitchen in KIDS BAKING CHAMPIONSHIP. In each episode, the tweens, who range in age from 10 to 13, put their desserts to the test as they go head to head in a series of challenges designed to test their baking skills as well as their ability to work under the pressure of time constraints. Hosts Duff Goldman and Valerie Bertinelli are on hand to offer feedback before judging the kids' concoctions and eliminating those who fell short each week. The winner receives a prize package including a feature in Food Network Magazine, a new set of bakeware, and $10,000.
Is it any good?
These impressive tweens could put many would-be bakers to shame with their mastery of technique and imaginative creations. It's truly inspirational to watch them at work because they love what they do and they're always looking to improve. Many of them already are accomplished entrepreneurs, so it's easy to imagine all will have future success in the field, regardless of the contest's outcome.
As reality contests go, Kids Baking Championship is about as family-friendly as it gets. The young participants want to win, but there's nothing cutthroat about the process, which is a refreshing change of pace if you're watching with kids. They share supplies and even offer occasional help to each other (reminding another baker that his cake timer went off, for instance) in the common work space, giving the contest more of an air of cooperation than of competition. And with Duff and Valerie making sure they give both professional criticism and positive feedback, even eliminated contenders leave feeling good about their work.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about what these contestants hope to accomplish by participating in Kids Baking Championship. How might they feel if they don't win? Alternately, how would winning change their lives, given their young age?
Kids: When you've created something, is it difficult to accept a criticism of your work? How does doing so make you feel? How does it influence your future efforts? How does it feel to do something well?
This show is a great way to inspire an interest in the culinary arts in your kids. You can follow up by picking out a recipe to try in the kitchen together. Talk about what it's like to create something delicious from simple ingredients. Why is it important to know where you food comes from?
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