September is in full swing, with lots of activities happening at Pathfinder Village, our local schools, and within our home communities. With all the hustle and bustle at this time of the year, it’s important to eat fresh, nutritious fruits and veggies to keep you and your family members healthy. That’s where Pathfinder Produce can be of help!
We hope you will stop by this Thursday afternoon at the Pathfinder Village Commons, from 1 to 5 p.m. to check out the great variety of produce at our weekly market. Competitively priced, tasty, and served up by a great staff … what’s not to love about our community market!
Below, Pathfinder School’s Director of Education Maura Iorio explores the educational aspects of food for youngsters. Enjoy!
Who says you can't play with your food?
Fruits and vegetables are essential to a healthy diet, but they can help young developing minds in other ways, too! Below, we have put together a list of fruit and veggie packed activities that can help children build fine and gross motor skills. Plus, when children are able to interact with fruits and veggies, and be a part of the preparation process, they are more likely to turn to and try these nutrient-dense foods. It's a win-win!
· Corn Shucking!
Sneaking in one last BBQ before fall settles in? Have the kiddos help out by shucking ears of corn! This simple activity builds hand strength and helps to develop fine motor skills. (Plus, it’s a great way for older kids to discuss seed growth).
· Sensory Bins!
Sensory bins are one of our absolute essential items in the classroom. They are great ways to help children interact with different textures, utilize hand-eye coordination, build fine motor skills, and learn self-calming techniques. Take a bin, or any similar container, and fill it with dried peas or beans. Hide various items in it for children to find, or give them spoons and measuring cups to explore with.
This link for a Peas and Carrots Alphabet Bin from The Letters of Literacy is a great way to combine vegetables, sensory play, and academics!
· Get Your Science On!
Grab a variety of fresh fruits and veggies and set up your very own science lab at home! Let your child explore how each fruit and vegetable feels, smells, looks (inside and out!), and tastes. For older kids, do some research on different types of botanical facts, like how scientists differentiate between fruits and vegetables.
· Apple Picking
Going apple picking is one of our favorite things to do in the fall. But did you know it's also a great vestibular and proprioceptive activity, too? In other words, kids get a wealth of sensory input, utilize lots of motor planning, and get to practice important skills like balance. Plus, there's all the delicious baked goods you can make with apples!
We hope you have fun testing out some of these activities! Good luck to all the kiddos who are settling into school routines this week. J
Maura (and Lori)