To continue on our food exploration, we gave the children Mango’s in their whole, cut, and bite-sized form. A book titled, “The Languages of Food”, originally inspired this activity. The goal with these food exploration activities is to allow children to expand their horizons and become comfortable with food in their whole and sliced form. Not many children have the opportunity to experience a mango in its whole form (or pineapples, cucumbers, tomatoes, and more.) The children have learned so much about these different foods concerning their texture, scent, taste, colors, seeds, and juices! (We attached some blogs below to link you to other posts we’ve written on this same study.) This allows for a wonderful sensory experience because the children are able to acquire knowledge of the world (and of food) through hands-on experience, not by memorizing or being taught, and it opens the door for children to understand food, where it comes from, and be willing to taste many things.
We cut the mangos into different sizes so the children could feel the different textures of the fruit and to encourage them to play with the fruit and eat it. This was an absolutely delicious activity for them. The children thoroughly enjoyed exploring the mangos with their taste buds, fingers, and noses (ha)! Some children immediately bit into the mango in its whole form while others gently gnawed on the slices of mango. Two of the children loved sharing the mango with the entire class and proceeded to pass the slices around. One child explained how he didn’t like the texture of the mango, but liked the taste of it.
One goal we’ve been trying to achieve is to show the children that each food has a different taste and textures. To illustrate this, we’ve introduced various fruits and vegetables in their whole forms, cut up, and diced so the children could taste and play with them. With thanksgiving coming up, it would be a wonderful experience to allow your children to play with the traditional thanksgiving foods we all know and love. Sweet potatoes, squash, and even green beans can be a source of inspiration and exploration!