Food Related Children's Books: Encouraging kids to learn about food.
The holidays are fast approaching and gifts are going to be purchased. Books make a great gift for any kid and if you are interested in helping your child learn more about food then maybe you should consider giving them a book about food. I have looked at many children’s books about food and nutrition over the years, but before I would show it to my kids or recommend it to others the book has to meet certain criteria. Here is what I look for in a book about food and nutrition for kids:
The book needs to focus on what to eat and not what we should not eat. Children generally accept positive messaging.
A theme that encourages fear of food is not one that I would recommend to children. We do not want to teach kids at an early age to fear what they eat. This could lead to selective eating and eventually eating disorders.
A book that includes great pictures of food is also great as good visual appeal may encourage a child to try something new.
It is also nice when a book can be used to teach children about foods in different cultures as this can help encourage acceptance and understanding. Some children may pack more non-traditional foods for lunch and a book that educates others about different food cultures can be used as a way to stop teasing that could happen in the lunch room.
Suggested books about food and nutrition for kids:
This is the way we eat our lunch- A book about children around the world by Edith Baer. The book is told in rhymes and includes some recipes at the end.
Dinner at the panda palace by Stephanie Calmenson. This is a counting book and it received a 5 star rating on amazon.
Eating the alphabet: Fruits and Vegetables from A to Z by Lois Ehlert. A lovely alphabet book that includes many exotic fruits and vegetables.
Fast Food by Saxton Freymann and Joost Elffers. The book offers beautiful pictures of fruit and vegetable sculptures.
The beastly feast by Bruce Goldstone. This story is about a group of animals that come together for a potluck dinner.
The vegetable show by Laurie Krasny Brown. A group of animated vegetables encourage healthy eating.
This Year’s Garden by Cynthia Rylant. This book tells the story of how seasons change by how a garden changes.
The Ugly Vegetable by Grace Lin. A story of a young girl questioning the appearance of an “ugly” vegetable garden compared to beautiful flowers. She learns a lesson when she tastes the soup these ugly vegetables make.
Where does broccoli come from? This book is by registered dietitian, Arielle Dani Lebovitz and includes multiple pictures and experienced based learning ideas about different vegetables.
What does your tummy say? Maryann Jacobsen, registered dietitian and author writes this wonderful tale of how a child begins to learn to listen to her tummy when she eats.
Any of these books would be great for a gift or a good find on your next library trip. Reading these books can be a fun and interactive way to teach your kids about food in a relaxed manner. Throughout the year I will share information on food and nutrition books for kids in my newsletter sign-up to receive these updates monthly.