Lately I’ve been catching myself using the “You need to eat healthy foods first,” phrase often. My son has a fervent sweet tooth, and like most kids, prefers sugary snacks to the vitamin rich foods he needs for solid growth and development.
But to a child, what is this “healthy” term, and why must it be the barrier to the tastier things in life? After asking myself this question, I decided it was important that I break it down for him.
A colorful diet is a healthy diet, and fruits and vegetables are the gateway. In this Colors of Nutrition printable learning activity, kids will first color the produce page. Next, they will cut and glue each fruit or veggie on the corresponding “color” page.
For every color page there is a quick passage about nutrition. It’s important for kids to grasp what healthy means, and understand how colorful foods impact the body in different ways.
Get started with our Colors of Nutrition printable download below!
Have your child or student fill in the fruits and vegetables on the produce page. This can be done simply with crayons, pencils or markers. Another option is to use construction or tissue paper for more color and scissor practice.
Then, have them cut the pictures out and glue them to the corresponding color page. While gluing each fruit and vegetable, read the nutrition excerpt on the page. Be sure to emphasize the importance of a colorful diet!
Red colored fruits and vegetables keep our hearts strong and healthy. They also contain antioxidants, which lower the risk of diseases such as cancer.
Orange colored fruits and vegetables contain Vitamin A, which keeps our eyes healthy and Vitamin C, which strengthens our immune system and keeps us from getting sick.
Green colored fruits and vegetables support our liver and contain disease fighting antioxidants. Cruciferous green colored foods such as broccoli or brussels sprouts are a good source of Vitamins C, K, E and fiber.
Purple and blue colored fruits and vegetables keep our brains healthy and support memory function so we can remember things. They also contain those disease fighting antioxidants.
Yellow: Much like orange, yellow colored fruits and vegetables contain Vitamin A, which keeps our eyes healthy and Vitamin C, which supports our immune system. Yellow foods also help our bodies heal cuts and scrapes.
White colored fruits and vegetables protect us from certain diseases and contain nutrients that help us digest food. Cruciferous white colored foods such as cauliflower are a good source of Vitamins C, K, E and fiber.
In addition to this learning activity, have your child assist in shopping for produce and meal prep. This way it’s possible to have organic conversations about nutrition and the value of a healthy diet. Feel free to supplement this activity with more on the affects of colorful foods on the body here.
The finished product!
We hope this introduction to the colors of nutrition will inspire your child or student to consume more fruits and veggies! For more excellent learning activities, check out more printable content HERE!
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The topics of race and racism can be difficult to broach with children, and deciding when and how can be complex. It is a firm belief of mine, as a mother to white children, that my work to cultivate positive change needs to start at home. So I’ve decided to talk to my kids and read them stories about race, and find books that feature characters who look different from them.
This post contains affiliate links, which means that we may receive a commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase using these links. All proceeds accrued from the links in this article will be donated to Color of Change, the Nation’s largest online racial justice organization. You can read more about their mission here.
My hope is that, in having these conversations early, future discussions about discrimination and white privilege won’t feel uncomfortable. I want them to be able to identify covert and overt racism, and call for justice when they see it.
I have found books to be one of the best ways to convey messages to children, with brains that are wired for stories and narrative. And because their age plays a large factor in what they should consume and retain, I’ve broken it down into groups.
If it’s time to update your classroom or at home library, here is our list of 2o of the Best Children’s Books about race and racism, broken down into 3 age groups
Studies show that babies recognize differences in skin color and hair textures. Even before it is possible to have conversations with your children, teach through through stories and actions. In addition, do your best to expose your child to a diverse environment and media that represents people of color. It’s important for kids to see their parents interact with people of other racial and ethnic groups.
When children become more vocal, it’s normal for them to spontaneously start talking about skin color. Help your child work through their curiosity by having a conversation about race. It’s also fine to bring up people’s physical differences before your child does. The goal is not to teach them to be “colorblind” but to love and respect people who look different than they do. Correct racial and cultural insensitivities when you witness them, as it is critical to model allyship.
When kids start school, their circle of exposure widens, which means that they may need more explicit guidance about race and racism. Kids this age are already receiving messages from TV and media about who has power and who is valued in our society. We must start teaching them to be critical readers and viewers.
This is also a time when we can begin to teach kids ways to combat racism and prejudice. But to do so, parents may have to first introduce them to the idea that some people get treated unfairly based on their skin color, culture or religion. Kids in this age group can also comprehend contextual examples of their privilege, like living a life without fear of experiencing racism.
We hope you love this list of Children’s books about race and racism and have selected a few to read to your own kids! To foster kindness and help kids discover the value of empathy, check out our Simple Methods for Teaching Kindness and Empathy.
School closures and stay home orders have us running out of ideas to keep kids entertained while stuck at home. Some days it is downright difficult to keep everyone occupied without resorting to screen time (and yes we’re doing our fair share of that!).
We know we’re all in the same boat, so we did a little digging. After some deep amazon browsing, we found 20 unique products and activities for kids of all ages that we want to share with our readers, in the hopes that we can lighten the load. We’re fairly confident that these fun finds will occupy kids in an enriching way, and can provide parents the time to accomplish tasks. Win-Win!
Check out these 20 unique Amazon finds to get kids through Quarantine with quick links provided below!
Have kids grow their own habitat and experience the wonder of nature with this Grow N’ Glow Terrarium kit! Comes with everything you need for two full plant life cycles including the plastic mason-style jar, decorative lid, potting mix, organic chia and wheat grass seeds, garden figurines, decorative sand, river stones and a plant mister to keep your terrarium watered. Additionally, add dimension to your terrarium with translucent glow-in-the-dark stickers that light up your terrarium at night! The perfect STEAM activity that mixes science and art. Recommended for ages 6+
Witness one of nature’s most spectacular transformations up close with this amazing butterfly garden! This STEM treat comes with everything you need and a full set of instructions to watch caterpillars change to butterflies via metamorphosis. Incredible!
I need this instructional guide for when my kids ask me to draw them their favorite animals! Simple step-by-step line illustrations make it easy for children (and their parents ha!) to draw with confidence. Each title contains 101 different images in all manner of shapes, sizes and poses.
Who doesn’t remember playing the floor is lava as a kid? Now it’s a board game! Players must imagine the floor is molten hot lava while spinning the color wheel to jump to the right foam pieces to reach safety. The Floor is Lava! is a family game that promotes physical activity, an active imagination, and engaging excitement for kids and adults.
Pizza lovers rejoice: Kids can now paint and plant their own pizza herb garden! Paint the planter and plant markers, and sow the basil, oregano and Arugula herbs with vibrant colors and tasty flavors. Follow along with the included step-by-step instruction. The kit includes a tin planter, plastic liner, soil, 3 seed packets, 6-color paint strip, 2 paint brushes, paint palette, 3 wooden plant markers, shovel, watering bottle, and beautiful instruction booklet.
Why not start them early? These yoga mats for kids are ideal for children and are designed to be fun and provide a healthy outlet that teaches a healthy body image, concentration, balance and calm even in the face of too much silliness. The mats are slightly sticky with a light tack, providing a safe and secure grip. A downloadable yoga class specifically designed for kids is included with your mat purchase to help get your little one started!
These 12 themed wooden jigsaw puzzles feature 24 durable wooden pieces that fit together smoothly to display under the sea, farm, safari, and insects. We love that the the large size of the pieces eliminate a choking hazard!
Calling all paint enthusiasts! Paint by Sticker includes everything you need to create twelve vibrant, full-color “paintings.” The images—including sunflowers, a fox, a hummingbird in mid-flight, two boats on the water are brilliantly made into a 3D effect. As in paint-by-number, each template is divided into dozens of spaces, each with a number that corresponds to a particular colored sticker. Find the sticker, peel it, and place it in the right space. Add the next, and witness it come to life!
This is a Trace-Along title! This fun and easy art activity book allows budding artists to use the wooden drawing tool enclosed to trace the white outlines on black-coated scratch art pages. They can also use the sketch pages in the back to draw their own pictures of favorite animal friends. Hard covered binding makes this grab-and-go activity extra resilient. 20 scratch-off, 20 illustrated, and 20 sketch pages. Recommended for ages 5 and up!
Here we have a physical activity challenge and an award winning toy to boot! Kids can show off their balancing skills while jumping from stone to stone. Create a new obstacle playground everyday! These foam stepping stones are both flexible and durable, lightweight and soft to the touch. Balance Stepping Stones were awarded the 2019 TOY OF THE YEAR AWARD for excellence by Creative Child Magazine!
Another absolutely great idea and huge hit with kids, DIY Kite kits! Kids can custom decorate their own kite, then fly them high. This is easy to assemble and comes with 3 kites to decorate, 8 multi color markers, and long ribbon colorful tails.
Spread kindness and positivity by painting and hiding rocks throughout your community for other kids to find. Just add imagination for endless creative fun! This complete craft kit comes with 10 rocks for designing, 8 waterproof paint colors, paint brush, rock transfer designs and tracking stickers. Waterproof art supplies make it possible to hide your painted rocks outdoors!
Score big with this party-sized edition of the best-selling dice game! It’s simple to play but each decision is crucial. The more numbers that are crossed off, the more points scored. With no downtime between turns, kids have a chance to gain from each and every roll! This deluxe game includes 8 dry erase markers and boards, plus bonus Qwixx Mixx game for alternate play. Heck yes!
We love this felt hand puppet craft kit that makes 12 puppets! Some of the many benefits to puppet creation include dramatic play, imagination, role play, learning, and creativity. Kit comes equipped with everything a child would need to make their own fantastical puppets.
We saved the best for last! Let your child explore their inner wizard with this spell-making kit! This unique educational pack will teach kids the science behind the color-changing magic. Supplies include 4 test tubes with stand, 1 clear tube wand with 2 caps, 2 measuring scoops, Purple paper, star stickers and activity guide. Definitely recommended for children 6 years of age and older with adult supervision. Viola!
As a self-proclaimed tree hugger it’s important to me that my kids understand the importance of Earth Day and why it’s vital to the future of our planet to set aside time to care for it. This activity is a simple and effective way to have that teachable moment on what keeps Earth healthy and thus, happy. On the opposite side, it highlights the actions that impact our environment in a negative way.
Watch as they sort & learn the small ways we can reduce and reuse to protect our precious planet. We’ve included the FREE Happy Earth Children’s Earth Day Activity printable. It’s available for download at the bottom of this post. Happy Earth Day!
You will need:
Blue or green construction paper
The Rock It Mama Earth Day printable (Two-page download at the bottom of post)
Glue the sorting chart page on either the green or blue construction paper for aesthetic purposes. Next, cut the two earths first and have your child distinguish between the happy earth vs. the sad earth. Glue both earths on the top of each side of the T chart.
As each graphic is cut out, have a conversation about the picture and what is taking place. Explain why each picture either makes the Earth happy or sad based on what is occurring. Lastly, have them glue the graphic on the correct side of the T chart.
Cutting Happy Earth printable for Earth Day learning activity.
Just look at that focus! (Insert heart eyes)
He’s well on his way to becoming a passionate environmentalist. Need more fun ideas for appreciating nature and the world around us? Add these 7 Nature and Exploration Ideas for Kids to your list!
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I call this time of year the winter lull. We’re post holiday season, mostly cooped up indoors, and running out of ideas to keep the littles even mildly entertained. When I’m all out of options and in serious need of a fresh activity to keep my preschooler occupied, I turn to something creative or crafty, and perhaps sensory in nature. And because I’m all about themes, I try to connect the activity to the time of year, which is why these Fun Valentine’s Day themed activities ideas are centered around our favorite February holiday.
So mama, if you’ve found yourself in a similar boat and the kids are in dire need of a new interest (and for you a moment of silence) give these Fun Valentine’s Day themed activities for preschoolers a whirl, and make sure to tell us what you think in the comments below!
1. Love Soup
I LOVE this Valentine themed sensory activity that you can potentially piece together without even leaving the house! Let your child pretend to create cups of “Love soup” with the colored water and foam hearts. Caution: it may get wet!
You will need:
A plastic bin filled with water
Red food coloring
Heart themed cups
Kitchen utensils (for pouring and measuring)
Towel for clean up
It’s important to note that while participating in this Love Soup sensory activity, children build skills in many different areas. Measuring and guesstimating amounts can be applied to math and science. Socially, kids can develop team-working skills. Sensory play can also be used as a calming tool & distraction for tantrums. It also provides your child an opportunity to explore their senses – touch, sight, sound (even smell & taste if you want to go there) while they simultaneously learn and discover. Cheap, easy to make, and a stimulating experience right at home. Yum!
2. Love Monster Book & Craft
This children’s book is one of my favorites for the Valentines Day Holiday and has a wonderful message about sharing with friends and the joys of giving. Crafts involving characters are a great way to get your kids excited about reading materials. You can purchase Love Monster and the Last Chocolate here!
You will need:
1 Paper Plate (per craft)
Red Tissue Paper
Kid Friendly Scissors
Red/White/Black Colored Cardstock
First cut your red tissue paper into small squares
Put a good amount of glue all over your paper plate
Have your child place the tissue paper on top of the glue, until the paper plate is completely covered
While your child is working on that, cut out the other “love” monster embellishments from the cardstock. Think eyes, ears, mouth etc.
To finish the Love Monster themed kid craft – glue on the facial features to the paper plate and display proudly
3. Heart Hunt
This one is excellent for releasing some of that pent up energy! Hide the hearts around your home (much like an easter egg hunt) and have your child perform the exercise listed on each heart as they’re discovered. To keep it interesting, offer a prize at the end once all of the hearts have been collected! I used simple actions like “jump on one foot” and “sing the ABCs” but feel free to cater it to activities your little can execute.
You will need:
Foam or paper hearts of various colors (foam will hold up better but I used paper since I already had it)
And there you have it! The Heart Hunt. We hope these fun Valentine’s Day themed activities for preschoolers help to liven the mood in your household and offer a switch to your normal routine!
Charitable pro-tip: you don’t have to have to be a billion dollar philanthropist to make the world a better place.
While the holidays are a wonderful time to reflect on the best aspects of our lives, it can be easy to forget our community members in need.
This year, families are experiencing unique challenges associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, including joblessness, financial insecurity, mental health issues, and general loneliness. It is now more important than ever to get involved.
To extend a giving hand in the spirit of the Holidays and to inspire compassion, we’ve compiled 8 easy, Covid-19 friendly ways to bring meaning to your holiday season, and to hopefully ease the burdens of those struggling right now.
Together we can make a difference!
Toys for tots is a wonderful organization specializing in toy collection. Every year dedicated United States Marines and local volunteers host a nationwide campaign to deliver Christmas to millions of less fortunate children. You can find a nearby toys for tots chapter here.
Sponsoring a family in need is another great way to pay it forward. In lieu of our secret Santa gift exchange one year, my girlfriends and I sponsored a family and each of us selected a child to buy for.
When it was all said and done the entire family had gifts to open on Christmas morning. If you’re interested in getting involved in this incredibly rewarding form of donation, click here.
Give the gift of warmth this winter. Clean out the closet and donate old coats and jackets to a homeless or battered women’s shelter. For many Americans living below the poverty line, a new warm coat is considered a budget extra.
When the time comes that your kids have grown out of their winter gear, consider donating to a coat drive such as the one facilitated by One Warm Coat.
Many coat drive collectors also ask for hand and toe warmers for those working in the cold or homeless. These are cheap to purchase, and go a long way in keeping folks enduring the cold warm this winter.
Canned food drive
Nonperishable food drives are happening everywhere this time of year. Pick up some extra canned foods during the weekly grocery run and drop them off at a food bank, church or any center accepting canned food donations.
Also, check with your child’s school, as many collect canned food around the holidays as well.
When donating, many people forget the need for hygiene products at shelters and deliver food-oriented goods instead. Its always a great idea to check in with the center and find out what products are in demand.
Think paper towels, toilet paper, toothpaste, feminine hygiene, diapers, etc. Another fun way to gather supplies is to host a toiletry drive.
Have friends and family literally drive by and drop off hygiene product donations and watch the goods pile up.
Help a Neighbor
As the old homage goes “Love thy neighbor” and what better time to show kindness than the holiday season, and hint, it doesn’t always have to be in the form of baked goods.
Maybe your neighbor needs their driveway shoveled or some help with the pets while they travel. Perhaps they’re spending the Holidays alone this year due to Covid-19 and social distancing, and just need someone to talk to.
It never hurts to ask if there’s anything you can do to help out. There’s also a good chance your good deed will be reciprocated!
In healthcare settings across the United States, donated blood is a lifesaving, essential part of caring for patients. The need for donated blood is constant, and blood centers are open and in urgent need of donations.
Important: The CDC is encouraging people who are well to continue to donate blood if they are able, even if they are practicing social distancing because of COVID-19. CDC is supporting blood centers by providing recommendations that will keep donors and staff safe.
Examples of these recommendations include spacing donor chairs 6 feet apart, thoroughly adhering to environmental cleaning practices, and encouraging donors to make donation appointments ahead of time.
Look for posters advertising local blood drives or stop by a blood donation center to ensure blood supply for ongoing patient needs and unforeseen trauma situations.
Volunteer at an Animal Shelter
Let’s not forget our furry friends. If adoption is just completely out of the question (I mean, what better gift for your loved one than a puppy) volunteer some of your spare time at a local animal shelter.
Help with dog walking, cleaning or donate pet food and toys. Some shelters will even let you bring home a pet for the holidays so they don’t have to spend this special time of year alone. Our animals deserve love too.
Start at Home
Our children are the fingerprints we leave on the world when we’re gone. It is vital to instill the values of kindness, empathy and compassion on the generation we are raising.
Kids can be taught with explanation and led by example. Paying for a stranger’s coffee or helping a friend move may seem like simple acts of generosity, but when our children are watching, it is possible to impress upon them a lifelong commitment to kindness and benevolence.
Do society a favor and get your kids involved in philanthropy early and often. For more information be sure to look into The Kindness Campaign.