Friday, November 11, 2011

Vegetables

Suggested Books:
Growing Vegetable Soup by Lois Ehlert
Eating the Alphabet by Lois Ehlert
The Carrot Seed by Ruth Krauss
The Vegetables We Eat by Gail Gibbons
Vegetable Alphabet Book by Jerry Pallotta
Vegetable Garden by Douglas Florian
Oliver's Vegetables by Vivian French
I Eat Vegetables by Hannah Tofts
Vegetables by Sara Anderson

Activities:

Vegetable Tasting Party:
Materials: a variety of raw vegetables
Description: Talk about the different vegetables that you have chosen for your toddler. Have your child help you wash and dry the vegetables. Cut the vegetables into bit size pieces and put them on a plate. Before you eat the vegetables, talk about their colors and textures. Have your child taste each vegetable. They can tell you how the vegetable tastes, if they like it, if it is crunchy etc. (If your toddler is not ready for raw vegetables, use cook veggies instead.)
Skills Targeted: teach your tot to eat healthy, teach your tot to recognize vegetables, teach your tot sensory development, teach your tot color recognition

Free Play:
Materials: toy vegetables (found at walmart and the dollar store)
Description: You and your toddler can explore vegetables together through play. As you manipulate the toy vegetables, talk about their color. Pretend to enjoy eating the vegetables. Get your toddler excited about vegetables!
Skills Targeted: teach your tot to recognize vegetables, teach your tot to play, teach your tot to explore and imagine

Sponge Paint Broccoli:
Materials: paper, green marker, sponge cotton ball or piece of broccoli, green paint
Description: Show your child a picture of broccoli (or a piece of real broccoli). Talk about how broccoli looks and feels. Explain to your child that broccoli is a vegetable. You and your child can create a piece of broccoli. On a piece of paper you (or your child if they are old enough) can draw the green stem. To create the broccoli's head, cut a sponge into a circle (or you could use a cotton ball or even a piece of real broccoli). Dip it into green paint and blot it on top of the stem over and over until it resembles a piece of broccoli.
Skills Targeted: teach your tot color recognition, teach your tot motor skill development, teach your tot to recognize vegetables

Pretend Soup:
Materials: plastic toy vegetables, a pot, large spoon
Description: Tell your toddler that you are going too make pretend vegetable soup together. Allow your child to choose the vegetables and put them into the pot. Encourage them to stir the soup. As they are stirring, discuss the vegetables that they put into the soup. You can also provide bowls and spoons for pretend eating!
Skills Targeted: teach your tot to play, teach your tot to explore and imagine, teach your tot to recognize vegetables

Vegetable Picnic:
Materials: picnic blanket (or large sheet), picnic basket, vegetables
Description: During snack time, go on a vegetable picnic with your child. In advance, pack the picnic basket full of fresh vegetables, cooked or uncooked, for you and your child to eat together. Put each different type of vegetable into a different container or ziplock bag. Spread out the picnic blanket in your backyard (or in your living room). Bring the picnic basket onto the picnic blanket and encourage your child to come sit with you. Have your child reach into the basket and take out one container or bag at a time. Open the container or bag and talk about the vegetable inside. Once all containers are open, eat the veggies! (You can also provide dips, such as salsa, hummus, or ranch dressing for the vegetables.)
Skills Targeted: teach your tot to get outside, teach your tot to recognize vegetables, teach your tot sensory development, teach your tot to eat healthy

Vegetable Hunt:
Materials: Paper
Description: Before going to the grocery store this week, have your toddler help you write out your grocery list. Tell them that you need to buy vegetables and see which ones they can name. Write down the list of vegetables. Keep showing your toddler the list and remind them that they helped your write it. When you go to the grocery store go on a vegetable hunt through the produce section. Read the vegetables from the list and see if you toddler can spot them. Even if you do not buy some of the vegetables, you can still show your child the large variety of vegetables at the grocery store.
Skills Targeted: teach your tot to recognize vegetables, teach your tot to make healthy choices, teach your tot about a grocery store, teach your tot sensory development, teach your tot language development

Vegetable Book:
Materials: a 4X6 mini photo album, camera
Description: Go on a vegetable hunt at your grocery store with your toddler (see above activity). As your little one finds different vegetables, take a picture of each one. Print all of the pictures and write the names of each vegetable on the picture (you can do with a white sharpie or other photo type pen or you can use text and type the words onto the pictures before you print them). Place all the pictures into a small 4X6 album to create your very own vegetable book. Read it throughout the week and see how many vegetables your toddler can recognize.
Skills Targeted: teach your tot language development, teach your tot to recognize vegetables, teach your tot to make healthy choices, teach your tot sensory development

Vegetable Face:
Materials: a variety of vegetables, a circle plate
Description: Arrange a variety of vegetables on a circle plate to look like a face. (for example: peas for eyes, avacado for a nose, green beans for a mouth, and shredded carrots for hair.) Have your child point to the eyes, nose, mouth, nose and ears. Ask them to eat each body part one at a time. As they eat the eyes, ears, nose, mouth etc. talk about each different vegetable.
Skills Targeted: teach your tot to recognize vegetables, teach your tot to recognize body parts, teach your tot to create and imagine

Veggie Art:
Materials: raw vegetables of your choice, paint
Description: Dip the vegetables in paint and make vegetable prints on a piece of paper. Rolling corn on the cob in paint and then rolling it on paper makes a really neat design. Your toddler can use asparagus as a paint brush. Broccoli can be dipped in paint and brushed onto paper also. Cut potatoes in half and make potatoe prints.
Skills Targeted: teach your tot to recognize vegetables, teach your tot sensory development, teach your tot to create, teach your tot motor skill development

Stone Soup:
Materials: a copy of the poem "Stone Soup" (this poem can be found under Songs and Finger Plays), a pot, water, beef cubes, salt, pepper, carrots, onions, cabbage, potatoes, green beans
Description:Read the "Stone Soup" poem to your child. Talk about the different vegetables that are mentioned in the poem and show each one to your child. Cut up the vegetables into bite sized pieces to add to the soup. Read the poem again and have your child put the ingredients into the pot as you read the poem. Use the beef cubes as pretend stones. Cook the soup until the vegetables are soft and read to eat. *Do not let your toddler near a hot stove. Do this activity before you put your soup on to cook!
Skills Targeted: teach your tot listening skills, teach your tot to recall a story or poem, teach your tot to recognize vegetables, teach your tot to follow directions, teach your tot to make healthy choices, teach your tot sensory development

Vegetable Sorting:
Materials: a variety of real or plastic vegetables, paper plates, crayons
Description: Display a variety of vegetables for your toddler. Talk about the different vegetables (their names, colors, textures, size etc.). Have your toddler (or you can do this prior to doing this activity) color one paper plate for every color that they see (for example: color one plate green for all the green vegetables, color another plate orange if there are orange vegetables etc.) To sort the vegetables, have your child put all the green vegetables on the green plate, all the orange vegetables on the orange plate and so on.
Skills Targeted: teach your tot color recognition, teach your tot to recognize vegetables, teach your tot to make healthy choices, teach your tot to sort, teach your tot to compare and contrast


Songs and Finger Plays:

Vegetable Song
(Song to the tune of "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star")

Carrots, Peas, and Broccoli,
Vegetables are good for me.
For my snack and in my lunch,
Veggie sticks are great to munch.
Carrots, peas, and broccoli.
Vegetables are good for me.

The Good Food Song
(Sung to the tune of "Old McDonald Had A Farm")

Vegetables are good for me
EIEIO
And so I eat them happily
EIEIO
With a carrot carrot here
And a carrot carrot there,
Here a carrot, there a carrot,
Everywhere a carrot carrot.
Vegetables are good for me
EIEIO

Replace the word carrot with different vegetables

I Like Veggies
(sung to the tune of "Are you Sleeping?")

I like veggies, I like veggies.
Do you too? Do you too?
I like corn and carrots,
I like peas and brussell sprouts,
Cauliflower too,
Asparagus too.

You can replace the names of the vegetables for different ones and sing again.

Oh, Do You Eat Your Vegetables?
(Sung to the tune of "Do You Know The Muffin Man?"

Oh, do you eat your vegetables, vegetables, vegetables?
Oh, do you eat your vegetables,
Each and every day?

Oh, yes I eat my vegetables, vegetables, vegetables.
Oh, yes I eat my vegetables,
Each and every day.

(Have your child name a vegetable then sing using the vegetable that your child named. For example use broccoli.)
Oh, _______ (your child's name) eats her/his broccoli, broccoli, broccoli
Oh, _______ (your child's name) eats her/his broccoli
Each and Every day.

Continue this song with different vegetables.

Stone Soup Poem:

Heat some water in a pot,
Add a stone that you have scrubbed a lot.
Sprinkle pepper, salt, and herbs.
Let it boil undisturbed.
Drop in carrots, onions too.
Let the soup heat through and through.
Stir in cabbage for some fun.
Add potatoes. Yum, yum, yum!
Toss in green beans. Let is stew.
Let it bubble. Let it brew.
Taste the soup, when its done.
Share "Stone Soup" with everyone!

Online Fun:

Coloring:
Browse through the "Fruits and vegetables" coloring section at http://www.coloring.ws/fruit.htm.

Videos:
Check out the vegetable videos at Sesame Street online.

Games:
Family Food
Grow your colors

Recipes:

Since our theme is vegetables this week, (and there are thousands of vegetable recipes out there) I thought it would be fun for all of you to share some of your favorite vegetable recipes. If you have a yummy vegetable recipe just leave it in the "comments" under this post!

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