How to Make Mealtime a Great Learning Experience for Kids in Child Care?
Mealtimes in child care can come out as significant learning opportunities for kids. Child care providers play a major role in helping young kids learn healthy eating habits above everything. During their mealtime kids can learn about colors, types of foods, learn to interact, make new friends, learn new language/words while communicating with other kids. A good child care provider can make mealtime a great learning experience for kids by creating a relaxed and joyful environment.
In the below post we’ve listed down the tips to make mealtime a chance to make kids learn new skills.
Tips for progressive mealtime in childcare
- Share the table and meal – Often, child care providers prefer finishing their pending or miscellaneous tasks during children’s mealtime. Honestly, this is not the right practice. This is the opportunity when you can sit and interact with kids, share the meal, talk about table manners and highlight the importance of eating healthy. Kids also learn by watching their teachers eating healthy diet.
- Initiate healthy conversation – Make mealtime a time for talking everything healthy. Discuss about kid’s family, things they love doing, talk about food – discuss about foods of different colors and shapes. Interacting with kids teach them language and social skills.
- Make it longer and fun – Ideally, your meal should last for at least 15 minutes. The reason being, stomach needs about 20 minutes to communicate to brain that it is full and satisfied. If kids finish their meal in less than 15 minutes, it may happen that they’ll not feel satisfied and might ask for more food shortly after the meal. Therefore, if you want to make them sit for 15+ minutes, make your mealtime fun and conversational.
Child care providers should try to making mealtimes positive, relaxed and fun time together, rather than a hasty experience between other activities.