Food Group Activities with Preschoolers

What a week we have had!
We started our new unit, Health and Fitness, from Mother Goose Time and have had a great time studying the 5 main food groups this week: Grains, Fruit, Vegetables, Protein, and Dairy.
Here are some of our favorite activities we did this week.
Grains Day
MGT sent us new monthly manipulatives: shapes.
We hid them in grains (rainbow rice) and dug out the pieces and matched them on a poster.
See how we made rainbow rice here (almost a year later and it still gets used ALL the time).
We made paper play sandwiches, packed them and other play food into a picnic basket, laid out a blanket, and had a play picnic indoors while the rain continued outside.
We even found an easy bread recipe that I had all the ingredients for in our pantry. So we made a loaf of French bread and then made french toast and breakfast for dinner.

Fruit Day
Fruits are parts of a plant that contain seeds such as apples, watermelons, and lemons.
Our color we are studying this month is purple, so we found some purple fruit in our play food stash….not much but some.
Avaleigh traced some of the play fruit and then added details to her front cover of her 
My Little Journal.  She then wrote the letter of what each fruit starts with.  Her “s” is backwards for strawberry, and she wrote a lowercase “g” for grapes.  I loved watching her sound out her words.

The heart is our shape of the month, and MGT sent us these cute fruit baskets and a bunch of foam punch out hearts.  Avaleigh decided to sort them by size, finding all the large hearts first.  We then counted how many were in each container (15 large and 30 small). 
After sorting and counting, she created a pattern with her large hearts.
Lots of math going on with these! 


Protein Day
Healthy Plate Game and our Catching Fish game were favorites from this day.
Avaleigh practiced setting a table using her play materials.  I kinda wish I just had gone to the dining room and had her set the table.  She did a great job.  Now I know another daily chore she can do… #momwin
We then played a healthy plate game.  MGT sent us an assortment of food pictures from all 5 food groups.  I cut them out, and then placed one from each group in front of Avaleigh.  She had to place them in the correct spot on her play plate.  

Lunch was perfectly timed following that game.
We went to the kitchen, made her lunch, and talked about what items were from what food group.
Green beans (with a little ranch)-vegetables
Pears- fruit
Cheese Quesadilla- dairy and grains
Turkey lunch meat- protein.
Definitely a healthy plate.
Most of the time, her plate is so much healthier than mine. 
After lunch we had so much fun playing Catching Fish!
All the supplies below came from Mother Goose Time.  I love how they make my homeschool life so much easier!  I hid a bunch of the cutout fish around the living room.  Afterwards Avaleigh drew a number card out of her bag, and then hooked that many fish onto her chenille stem hook.  
It was a lot of fun hunting for the fish.
You could easily challenge your child by having them add numbers of the the fish they caught.
I wanted to do that, but Everett woke up from his nap and ended our game… #momlife.
Maybe we will play again this weekend though. 

Dairy Day
You have to talk about cows when you talk about dairy!
Did you know they have 4 stomachs?!  I feel like I knew that at one point in my life but forgot… or I never knew it.  Let’s just pretend I did and forgot.
MGT sent us materials to create our own dairy cow puppet, complete with tail, udders, heart, and 4 stomachs! So cute!
Sorry the lighting is a little dark…we were just about to get some snow when we made this!
Snow… in Texas… and yesterday we were in short sleeve shirts.

We then played a game focusing on prepositional words.
A preposition relates a noun or pronoun to another word.  
Basically think about a ball and a box.  All the places a ball can go in relation to the box are prepositional words.  
For example: The ball is NEXT TO the box.  The ball is UNDER the box.
The ball is ON the box.  The ball is IN the box.  The ball is ABOVE the box.  
So using a cow and our poster, I said prepositional words and my girl had to place her cow accordingly.
Put the cow UNDERNEATH the blue birds.
Put the cow ABOVE someone wearing a helmet.
Place the cow NEXT TO a girl.

STEAM Stations
Last but not least, we had a blast with our weekly suggested steam station…a Vegetable Stand.
I have had this scale for years and have never used it.  So glad I held onto it, because Avaleigh loved measuring the weight of things and comparing them.  Too bad the baby wanted in on the action.  The scale had to be put away but brought back out during nap time.

On Friday, I grabbed the bucket of all her play food, labeled colored construction paper with the 5 food groups, and watched my girl sort.  There were some challenging ones…like cereal or macaroni and cheese.  I just allowed her to place it where she thought it most belonged.

Job well done my girl!

We haven’t really done our vegetable day yet.  We had our Homeschool Co-op Day Tuesday, and didn’t get to our vegetable day, but stay tuned!
So which activity is your favorite and which one might you try with your little learners?

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