Keep Kids Engaged with Virtual Camp
Traditional summer camp may not look the same this year, but many parents are searching for virtual camp ideas to keep kids active and engaged this summer. Being house-bound means kids can get creative and have fun in new places – especially in the kitchen!
Getting kids into the kitchen and more familiar with cooking will not only keep them busy and entertained throughout the day but will also teach them valuable skills that they will use for the rest of their lives. Our team has developed a range of kids in the kitchen resources and fun activities designed to help young chefs build confidence in the kitchen and form a healthy relationship with food.
Keep reading to discover how you can gain free access to these engaging resources, as well as find simple tips for making kitchen time more fun for kids this summer!
Get Kids in the Kitchen This Summer
From simple tips and tricks to engaging activities that are fun and educational, we have all the resources you will need to create a virtual camp experience focused on getting your kids in the kitchen this summer.
Growing Minds Education Program
Our Growing Minds Education Program resources give youth a comprehensive look at fresh food and the importance of eating healthy. From learning about growing food in greenhouses, to how our digestive systems work, to food and nutrition literacy, there is so much kids can learn about the importance of developing critical healthy eating habits by exploring these resources!
If you would like to access our Growing Minds Nutrition Education program resources, good news – they’re completely free! Simply visit the Growing Minds homepage, select your child’s grade level, and explore each topic for unique Lesson Plans, Activity Sheets, Quizzes, and more!
Topics to choose from include:
- The Digestive System
- Importance of Water
- Greenhouse Growing
- Exploring Your Senses
- Mindful Eating
- Food Groups
- Food Labels
With these engaging resources, youth can confidently build healthy, life-long eating habits, learn important food skills, and develop a healthy relationship with food! So, what are you waiting for? Start exploring our free education resources so you can create a fun and engaging summer virtual camp experience for your kids!
Free Kids in the Kitchen Guide
If you are looking for helpful tips and tricks from the experts for getting your kids in the kitchen, you’ve come to the right place. We created The Complete Guide to Getting Kids in the Kitchen that will inspire children to eat more vegetables and encourage them to gain confidence as young kitchen helpers. With more time being spent at home this summer, now is the perfect time to encourage children to become more engaged in home-cooking and food preparation.
This free guide includes lots of tips, tricks, and recipe inspiration from healthy eating experts designed to get your children into the kitchen and helping with cooking tasks. From age-appropriate ideas for getting kids involved in meal preparation, to delicious recipe ideas that will engage and excite, this guide provides a range of practical ways parents can get their kids excited about helping in the kitchen.
Here are some age-appropriate kitchen tasks to get you started:
- At 18 months and beyond, if they are supervised, children can help pour dry ingredients into a bowl, tear lettuce or spinach, rinse vegetables and fruit, and place pieces of Bell Pepper or other chopped vegetables into a baking pan or bowl.
- From about 2 years and beyond, children can help with tasks such as pouring small amounts of wet liquids into recipes, stirring ingredients together, and holding down the lid on a blender. They can also help mash potatoes or sweet potatoes with a fork. If your child can count, have them count the number of anything you are adding to a recipe, such as number of Tomato slices or cups of flour.
- At 3 years of age, a child can do all these things with greater independence, especially if they have gotten used to doing them from an early age. They can also start to voice their opinion more on what they want to help with or eat. For example, you could say, “Would you like to make banana muffins or banana bread?”. When given the opportunity to choose, they are more likely to stay engaged during the process and try the finished product.
- At 4 years of age, children can help put groceries away, pour cereal and milk, get their own water, put spreads onto breads or wraps, stir pasta, add ingredients together for muffins or cookies, help to serve fresh vegetables onto plates, or put dip into a bowl. It may not be done perfectly, but (from my experience) they will be much more interested in eating carrots and hummus that they have prepared than if you did it all for them. Children at this age can also learn how to properly measure dry ingredients for a recipe and are at a perfect age to start being involved in lunch choices and preparation.
- As a child gets older, they can start to measure liquids for a recipe, cut fruit with a dull knife, peel oranges and bananas with less help, make toast and scrambled eggs, pack their own snacks and lunch, and do all the above activities with more proficiency. Before you know it, your child will be making you breakfast on the weekends!
Getting your children involved with more kitchen tasks is the perfect way to incorporate learning into your virtual camp itinerary. Download a free copy of our Kids in the Kitchen guide and start cooking with your kids today!
Another great way to get kids in the kitchen and interested in food is by creating fun ‘snacktivities’ or food art projects for them. Through the process of creating food art, your kids may even take that first bite of Red Pepper or dip a Cucumber slice into hummus for the first time! But even if they don’t, you will make fun memories together, and the food exposures that they experience will have lasting value.
Our Spring Snacktivities blog features 5 bright and delicious snacktivity ideas that will get your children excited to interact with their food. One of our favorites from this blog is our Brunch Bunny snacktivity – here’s how to make it!
The ingredients you’ll need to create 4 brunch bunnies:
- Sweet & Savory Pepper Pancakes
- 1 Long English Cucumber
- 1 Yellow Bell Pepper
- 2 Cherry Tomatoes
- 1 banana
- 4 blueberries
- 8 small pieces of white cheese
- 4 medium plates
Here are the steps:
- Cook our pancake recipe, ensuring you make 4 pancakes with a 5-inch diameter for the bunny heads, and 8 pancakes with a 1-inch diameter for their cheeks.
- Wash produce before preparing.
- Slice the Cucumber on an angle to make the ears.
- Core the Pepper and remove the seeds. Cut the Pepper into thin 2-inch long slices to use for the whiskers.
- Slice the banana into round circles, and the Tomatoes and blueberries in half.
- To assemble the bunnies, add the Cucumber ears to the top of each pancake. Place 2 banana slices with the halved blueberries on top for eyes. Use a halved Tomato for the nose, 2 small pancakes for the cheeks, and Peppers on top of the cheeks for whiskers. Finally, place 2 pieces of white cheese on the bottom half of the big pancake for the bunny’s front teeth!
Get Cooking with Fresh Recipes
An incredibly simple way to get kids in the kitchen this summer is by involving them in trying new recipes! You can let them pick a new recipe to try every week, involve them in the meal preparation and cooking process, and ask them questions about any new ingredients featured in the recipe. When you involve your children with trying new and healthy recipes at home, you are helping to build a positive relationship between them and the foods they eat.
For endless healthy recipe inspiration, head to our Recipes page!
Get Your Kids in the Kitchen This Summer!
With more time being spent at home with our families, creating virtual camp experiences focused on getting kids in the kitchen this summer is a great way to ensure they have fun while also learning new and valuable skills. We hope these resources will set your children up for continual success and enable them to think fresh!