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Summer Eating for Kids

by The Brain Wave Center staff

 

It is well established and documented that your brain accounts for as much as 20% of the body’s total power requirements. Get your kids involved with the grocery shopping this summer. Making sure they are engaged in this chore can promote their sensory development and keep their brains super-charged this season.

This simple activity familiarizes them with different foods, while teaching them where the food comes from. Here are some grocery store games to play with your kids:

 

  • Have your child find a whole food item (fruit, vegetable, grain, meat or nut) for every color of the rainbow.
  • Choose a letter of the alphabet and have your child pick out a whole food item that starts with this letter.
  • Assign your child a shape or texture and challenge them to locate a food that matches it in the produce section.

 

Afterwards, invite your kids to help you in the kitchen. There is a task for every age, whether it’s sorting, rinsing, measuring, pouring or cutting. Kids of all stages will benefit from hands-on contact with their food. Picky eaters are more likely to expand their palettes once they’ve had a chance to see, smell, touch and taste foods throughout the cooking process.  Cooking together also instills a sense of creativity and self-assurance in them.

Here’s one recipe suggestion for the whole family to make together: Zucchini Pizza Bites. And speaking of food, how about planting a garden this summer?  Kids who tend a garden learn about soil, seeds and caring for seedlings, as well as where food comes from. You can plant a windowsill garden in your house, start one in your backyard or join forces with other families to start a garden at school or community plot. Bonus: gardening is beneficial exercise too! 

Zucchini Pizza Bites

 

  • 3 large zucchinis
  • Olive oil (for brushing)
  • 1/4 cup marinara sauce
  • 1/3 cup shredded mozzarella
  • Dried oregano (for sprinkling)

 

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 F.
  2. Let the kids rinse and dry the zucchini.
  3. Let older kids slice the zucchinis into 1/4 inch rounds. Parents of younger children should do this step.
  4. Let the kids place the zucchini rounds on a lined baking sheet.
  5. Have them brush the rounds lightly with olive oil.
  6. Place the baking sheet in the oven for five minutes to allow the zucchini to soften. An adult should do this step.
  7. Remove the baking sheet out of the oven. An adult should do this step.
  8. Let the kids spoon a layer of marinara sauce over each zucchini then sprinkle the cheese and oregano on top.
  9. Place the pan back in the oven and bake for another 10 minutes, or until cheese is melted. An adult should to this step.
  10. Enjoy the meal you created together!

If you want to learn more or schedule a consultation, call The Brain Wave Center at 941-552-4500 or visit BrainWaveCenters.com.

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