Tag Archives: food
Children constantly absorb information from the world around them. They look, touch, smell, hear, and taste all while drawing conclusions about their surroundings. Sensory play is thought to only be for babies and toddlers, but sensory play can successfully extend into the grade school age. The perception of sensory play is so limited that many only view it as a child working in a sandbox, paint, or trays of water, however sensory play goes beyond items that children can touch. In fact sensory play is an activity that allows children to receive information through all of their senses. With this in mind, the children of The School of Wonders use food purchased during field trips and their sense of taste as a basis to explore various foods and connect the students to geography. Continue reading
The other day we made veggie burritos with corn, beans, tortillas, cheese, and spinach. The veggie burrito was a compilation of learning opportunities. We gave the children the Spanish and English term for every item placed on a plate. As the children placed each ingredient on their wheat tortilla we went over colors.
Every week the children explore a variety of foods. This exploration can be in the form of a recipe, or simply examining food in its whole form. This week the children wanted to make a salad with ingredients they picked out such as romaine lettuce, tomatoes, avocados, cucumbers, shredded carrots, and turkey slices.
We provided the children with butter knives and they began naming all the vegetables. They spoke of the different colors each vegetable was, noticing the majority of the ingredients were green. The children observed the size as well, some were round while others were oval shaped and one was even very long! They told us the tomato was wet and mushy when you cut into it.
Before cutting the tomato and guiding them on how to cut it we began discussing fractions through a tomato. First the tomato was cut evenly in half making 2 halves. Then we slowly began cutting it into smaller pieces making 4 pieces all the way to eight pieces. We spent time exploring fractions and how they look in written form. They were provided paper and black markers to draw how a whole tomato was turned into pieces after they cut it. This gave them a better understanding of a fraction. The teacher observed the children being very attentive and wanting to cut each ingredient the right size.
We believe in using food as a language weekly in our classrooms. Our hope for our children is to develop a culture of healthy and proper diet. Cooking new recipes helps children to develop a positive connection to all different types of foods including fruits and vegetables. Forming a positive experience with fresh foods is so important because healthy foods are the foundation for good nutrition. Children will also learn basic cooking skills that they can use for the rest of their lives.
The children benefited from this project in a plethora of ways. They worked on their fine motor skills by cutting into different veggies, eye-hand coordination, following directions on how to make a salad which helps the children to improve their listening skills, working collectively as group and helping one another out, and being able to incorporate math with the vegetables through counting and fractions. Allowing the children to choose the ingredients to create an edible meal provided them the opportunity to develop more confidence in their skills and abilities. As the children followed a recipe they successfully organized the ingredients, followed a process, and executed various directions while applying math and language development by discussing aloud fractions with their food. We look forward to where our next exploration with food takes us!
“…no one is born a great cook, one learns by doing.”
To continue the infant’s study of food and food exploration, they played with carrots last week! The infants particularly enjoyed the green leafy parts and loved shaking it the carrot back and forth in their hands. The children were curious about the contrasting textures and colors of found in the carrot and enjoyed nibbling on the vegetable.
In the photos below, you can see them grasping onto the leafy green stem, gnawing on the end of the carrot, and having fun playing with the vegetable!
For our Friday food exploration activity with the infant class, the children explored and experimented with Papaya and Broccoli! They loved the sweet taste of the papaya and thoroughly enjoyed digging their hands and fingernails inside the middle of the fruit and playing with the dark colored seeds.
The broccoli was an entirely different sensory experience for them. The infants stared intently at the broccoli trees at first, and eventually began nibbling on the bushy green top. It was interesting to observe the children rub the smooth papaya over their gums and then gently nibble the textured broccoli.