This week was “Junior Foodie Week” on the Melissa & Doug blog, and we hope you had as much fun playing with your food as we did! In case you missed any posts or activities, here’s a quick overview of what we shared this week. (To add to these ideas, or share your food play photos, please e-mail us! We’d love to hear your thoughts and suggestions!)
To kick off “Junior Foodie Week,” we shared the top six benefits of involving kids in real cooking and food-focused play, including:
- Familiarity with a variety of foods, which helps kids feel confident about trying new things
- Hands-on math practice, as kids measure, count, and divide ingredients and portions
- An interest in nutrition and a feeling of ownership for good nutritional choices
- Bonding between parent and child, as kids enjoy the treat of joining you in a “grown-up” job
In this post we share five activities to help your child understand nutrition (with some help from choosemyplate.gov). Using a free printable, we share some ways you can help your child sort, track, and understand what makes a balanced, nutritious meal!
Who says you can’t play with your food? (Not us!) In this post, guest blogger Sarah shares a lunchbox activity involving both real and pretend food. Creating, preparing, and packing lunches side by side with your kids is a great activity that gets them thinking about and helping with mealtime planning. It’s also a great time to talk about food groups, balanced meals, and the foods themselves.
Holiday Baking with Kids: How to Keep it Fun (Without Destroying Your Kitchen!)
Finally, what would the holiday season be without a little baking? Guest blogger Tiffany takes us through a special activity in this blog post, featuring the Melissa & Doug Slice and Bake Cookie Set and her own scrumptious cookie recipe! Not only is the activity lots of fun, but it also involves some great educational lessons for kids about colors, sorting, measuring, counting, and more.