Food Education

Free Child Nutrition Class + Toddler Cooking Update

I haven’t been very present on this blog recently, mostly because of personal events (all good, nothing to worry about!) that have kept me very busy. I certainly haven’t been cooking as much as I should so there really hasn’t been much to write about.

I did want to tell you about a free class offered online on Coursera called “Child Nutrition and Cooking 2.0“. The class started last week and only lasts 5 weeks. Whether you work in childcare or just want to learn to cook better for your own children, this appears to be a great class! Each week, you have to watch a few videos, including information on child nutrition as well as easy recipes. The only “real” assignments are a short quiz and a short survey each week, but there are also optional cooking assignments and a discussion board. At the end, you get a completion certificate, which can count toward your professional development if you work in childcare (although you should ask your director/supervisor to be sure). Did I mention all of this is free??

In related news, although it hasn’t been anything big enough to write a full post about it, here’s what we made with the toddlers in the past two weeks:

Yogurt Parfaits : We gave the children a big cup with vanilla yogurt. We also gave each of them 2 additional small cups, one of granola and one of thawed frozen berries. We asked them to pour the two small cups into the big one and mix it all together. Most of them especially loved the fact that the berries turned their yogurt purple! The best part about them making their own individual parfait is that they were allowed to taste the various ingredients along the way! 🙂

Mixing up the ingredients for the perfect parfait. :)
Mixing up the ingredients for the perfect parfait. 🙂

Smoothies or “almost-ice cream”: As we are talking about winter and cold this week, we wanted to make a frozen food project. Our snack buddy brought frozen bananas as well as fresh strawberries and milk. The children weren’t as involved in the process but enjoyed touching the frozen bananas (through the bag). They also liked looking at the blender and seeing all the colors turn into one very pink concoction. The result almost had an ice-cream texture, at least enough to let them use spoons to eat it.

The children also had the chance, thanks to some very thoughtful friends of mine (thanks Seth & Holly!) to plant potatoes in our small toddler garden! They really loved digging and hiding the potatoes and, as a bonus, we even found a bunch of earth worms. Worms, digging and messy hands…what’s not to like for a toddler? I told them that when the potatoes will grow, we will use them to cook. If we are lucky, some of them will be ready before the end of the school year!

Planting our potatoes!
Planting our potatoes!

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