11 Creative Ways to Teach Your Kids About Healthy Eating (Slideshow)
Teach Them Well
Preventative care begins at home. Parents can help by developing healthy eating habits for themselves and their household, so children are less likely to grow into obese adults. And while leading by example is always an effective tool, working with your kids to help them ingrain healthy eating habits doesn’t hurt either. Teaching your kids to eat healthily on an interactive level can be a challenge and come off as a chore if you're constantly defining healthy food and eating according to a text book, but it doesn’t have to. There are so many creative and fun ways to get kids to learn healthy habits without making it feeling like work for them. From games and tools to productive dinner table talk, you can teach your kids all about healthy eating in a way that is both fun and easily digested. Here are some of our favorite ways to help kids learn the do’s and don’ts of healthy eating.
Have Fun with Food
Getting kids to eat anything, not just vegetables, can be a challenge. With picky palates, children often snub anything that doesn’t include a value-meal toy. To get them to try new things, parents are turning to playing with food to get them engaged with different dishes. How, you may ask? By making the food funny-looking of course! By creating silly faces, using funny ketchup designs, and even simply slicing foods differently, they're getting kids to dig in to dinners with more fervor than before. Just check out these great ideas from parents with picky kids just like yours!
Grow a Garden
Children are interactive learners. By growing a garden with them, you can not only give them the tools they need to be an expert home botanist, you’ll pique their curiosity for different foods since they had a hand in growing them!
Play with Doof
Doof, an interactive program online, has a ton of fun games and brain busters all about healthy eating. They developed their strategy around how junk food is marketed to kids.
While you’re trying to get your shopping done, you can keep the kids entertained with the healthy grocery game. As you’re working through the aisles, send kids on missions to find the healthiest item in the aisle. Give them points for correct guesses, and explanations for incorrect ones.
This interactive internet game is a great way to give your young ones quality food education. Working with the government’s MyPlate, kids can build healthy plates and do other fun activities that quietly teach them the do’s and don’ts of healthy eating.
Fun Food Word Searches
Take this word search to the next level. Print it out, and ask your kids to circle only the healthy foods they find. If they circle a junk food, talk to them about why it does not count as a healthy food.
Healthy Coloring Books
Buy them activity books or print out these healthy pages for a fun, interactive way to teach them about the benefits of fruits and vegetables.
Farmers Market Fun
Want to show your kids the benefits of healthy eating and teach them about sustainability? Take them to the farmers market and show them the bins and bins of healthy vegetables. Ask them what each food’s proper name is and have them help you select the best finds.
Stick to Stickers
Junk foods often have enticing and friendly mascots that make them so alluring. So use big companies’ strategies for fruits and vegetables. Store chopped fruits and vegetables in Tupperware that is branded with loveable characters so your kids associate healthy eating with their favorite things!
Let them eat their words with this fabulous healthy eating crossword puzzles. Give them clues like “This food is bright red, round and grows on trees,” for healthy foods like apples.