Toddlers in the kitchen

All the charts on the walls and food pyramids on the fridge won't turn your kids on to good food and nutrition like getting their hands and hearts into it will. Getting them involved with food, making it connect to everyday experiences, helping them to see food as a part of culture will make nutrition and healthy eating fun and interesting.

Your little ones have not yet been bombarded with nutrition facts and figures, or an overload of "eat it, it's good for you." They are still receptive and open to experiencing food. Set aside a small space in the kitchen, and with a small bit of your tolerance and patience (they are going to make a mess and waste some food) they will begin to learn all about food, while you sneak in a few comments about nutrition.

 

Watch Video: Peanut Butter & Jelly

 
 

The set up: In a lower cupboard set aside at least the lower shelf for your toddler. Supply it with safe kitchen tools they will enjoy. These may include: yogurt containers with lids, (fill with beans and secure with duct tape to make a tambourine), an old oatmeal box (good drum material), plastic bowls (for stirring and mixing), plastic measuring spoons, wooden spoons, rubber spatulas, plastic cookie cutters, rolling pin, plastic measuring cups and anything else your young cook might like.

Important Note: Remember, the kitchen can be a very dangerous place for a child. Never leave your child unattended, even for a minute.

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