children harvest food from our healthy garden

By Erin Tessier

As a parent, we all know the struggle of getting our children to eat healthy foods. Sometimes just getting them to eat anything at all is a struggle! But the more exposure they get to healthy food, and the more we model healthy eating, the better. There are many tips and tricks to encourage healthy food choices, but one way is to get the kids involved in making their food and to let them see where healthy foods come from. That’s exactly what we did in the Nature Lab and garden these past weeks.

We showed the children some examples of healthy, and less healthy choices and let them categorize them. We talked about how much of their plate should be full of vegetables, fruits, healthy grains, protein, and dairy (if that’s on the menu). Then we made a healthy fruit and veggie smoothie from some plants growing in the garden, as well as some of our organic produce from the kitchen.

Ingredients: (varied slightly based on availability):

Frozen mangos/blueberries
Yogurt or applesauce

preschoolers pick carrots from our garden

The kids had a great time harvesting the carrots, kale, strawberries, and microgreens from the garden. They then helped choose and add the different ingredients to the blender. All were mesmerized when the blender loudly mixed everything together. Everyone got a chance to try the smoothie and many asked for seconds and thirds!

toddlers enjoying healthy foods in our preschool

Below are some links that you may find helpful in further encouraging your child to eat healthy foods.

toddler girl enjoys healthy food at carmel mountain preschool