Teaching Your Child about Food Groups

This post is brought to us by Kim Vij from The Educators’ Spin On It.

Teaching your Child About Food Groups

March is National Nutrition Month.  Let’s build a healthy foundation with our kids with a few playful activities with pretend food. Ask yourself a few questions before we begin:

  • How well do you think your child knows the names of the food groups?
  • Do you think they would be able to identify which food group a food item belongs in?
  • Could they tell you which portion should be on their plate of each?

Sorting Wooden Food into Food Categories

As parents, one of our jobs is to help them understand the role of proper nutrition in our child’s lives.  Let’s help them understand how to fuel their energy tanks with healthy choices with a fun activity.  Two  resources to utilize are Let’s Move and Choose My Plate; you can print out your own “My Plate” version to hang out your fridge or create a placemat for your table this month.

Teaching Children About Food Groups by Sorting

Food Group Activities

Now it’s time to teach them what belongs on their plates at every meal.  Take a look around your house and locate any play foods that you have.  Melissa and Doug has a Wooden Food Group set, Cutting Fruit and Cutting Foods a fun option this activity.  You also have the option of using Make a Meal Stickers or images from a Magazine or Grocery Store Advertisement to sort into food groups too. Once you’ve gathered your foods, it’s time to sort them into food groups.

Sorting Toy Food into Food groups

Food Group Activities

  • Write or print out the words to match each food group and label.  {Click here to print}
  • Sort the play food into the food groups
  • Cut out food from magazines and fliers and sort
  • Create patterns with the foods

Building Healthy Meals

  • Create a plate with the right portions
  • Create a “My Plate” placemat
  • Set up a pretend grocery story with various food sections
  • Great a Food Groups Book
  • Check out books form the library about food groups
  • Set up a tour of your local grocery store

Sorting Food Groups Activity for Kids

Teaching food groups at an early age is an important step to a lifestyle of healthy choices.  Talk with your child about food groups with them as you grocery shop, prepare meals, order meals and even as you plan to set up your garden this year.  It will help your child to understand food groups and where food comes from laying the foundation for a healthy nutrition.

Learning About Food Groups with Kids


What is your biggest challenge with encouraging your child to eat a balanced meal? Leave a comment below.

Kim Vij Head Shot 150 by 150Kim Vij is an early childhood educator and mom of three. She shares her “Educator’s Spin” on parenting issues and how to make everyday moments into learning opportunities on The Educators’ Spin On It and award winning Pinterest Boards.


You can find Kim on PinterestFacebookTwitterInstagram & Google +


  1. I LOVE this activity. What a great way to introduce your children to the words for the food groups, teach nutrition, and promote open ended play. Can’t wait to try this with my 3 kiddos today.

  2. Love this idea! We talk to our kids about food groups when shopping but this is a great activity at home! I never would have thought to ask for a tour of the store, how fun! My biggest challenge is not with the kids but with coming up with a variety of meals. My kids eat all the food groups but a lot of it is repeated frequently. I am happy they are good eaters though, lucky mama!

  3. What a cool activity! And so unique! Thanks for sharing at After School!

  4. I really need to do this with my daughter. She is very independent and loves serving herself at dinner. This will really help her to know what to put on her plate and how much.