Eating right and well should be something all our children our taught at a very young age, so they have a better chance of carrying forward those good habits into their future. It might take a little bit of luck, and a lot of perserverence, but it's certainly something worth fighting for.Food Revolution Day events, The Well Gro Co. had a unique way to get children engaged. At their booth, at the SFC Farmer's Market, they had a Radio Flyer filled with fresh herbs and vegetables they were giving away to children and parents to promote their mission of teaching kids about good food in public schools - even to the point of providing cafeterias with fresh produce for school lunches.
- Pick up an easy to maintain herb, that's versatile and has a great aroma - basil and mint work really well for this.
- When you get home help your kids plant the herb, either in a pot on the window sill or outside where it will get some natural light.
- Explain how the nutrients the plant will receive from the soil and water will get transferred right back to us when we eat it.
- Then snap a piece off, and let them smell the herb for themselves - their eyes will likely light up.
- Suggest that maybe something should be made with that herb tonight. Make it seem fun and bold, what if we put that mint on some guacamole? Or what if we put that basil on our pizza?
Once they see how tasty their efforts can be, they'll be likely to make that connection with real food and natural taste. Children will feed off your enthusiasm for this, so if they see you involved and appreciative of the new house guest - what else could we make with that basil today? - they'll likely pick up that same level of joy. Caring for the new plant then won't seem so much as a chore, but as a reward - not just for dinner, but for their future.
More on promoting healthy eating habits from The Kitchn:
• The Apple Trick: On Not Tricking Kids into Eating Well
• Kids love to Dip? 5 Healthy Dips that Qualify as Lunch
• 5 Sweet & Healthy Treat Ideas for Kids' Classrooms
• Jamie Oliver's TED Talk: Teach Kids About Food
• Michelle Obama's Recipe Contest for Kids
(Images: Chris Perez)