Our Kindy Kitchen program has been designed to encourage children to participate in the preparation of food at the centre. The program enables the educators to work with the children in developing knowledge about food and healthy eating, learning in a practical way.
Healthy eating habits are important for a lifetime of good health and it is paramount to start instilling these choices in our children as early as possible. Not only do staff at Allambie Bush Kindy frequently talk with the children at meal times about what they are eating and where the food comes from, but with the Kindy Kitchen Program, children can also take pride in knowing they have prepared some of this food for their peers.
Our Kindy Kitchen Vision
In Australia, we currently face an increasing problem with overweight and obese children. The intention of Kindy Kitchen is not to specifically target this, but to build a foundation for establishing healthy lifestyle choices in children in relation to healthy eating. Arming children with knowledge about foods will contribute to preventing weight problems and children will optimally develop positive attitudes towards food and eating food.
Kindy Kitchen follows the National Quality Standard 2.1 ‘Healthy eating and physical activity’, the Early Years Learning Framework and programs such as Munch & Move and Get Up & Grow: Healthy Eating and Physical Activity for Early Childhood. Using information from these resources as well as having a hands-on approach connects the children with the social constructs that come with being in the kitchen, preparing food for others and eating together. Self-pride and recognition from peers is achieved, and along with that comes knowledge about themselves and others.
What your child will experience
Kindy Kitchen involves a small group of children participating from each room every week. Having a small group promotes peer learning, cooperation and participation for all working towards preparing either a small meal or snack for the rest of the children in the centre. Some activities or discussions during Kindy Kitchen may include:
- Kitchen safety, using equipment safely and learning about hygiene.
- Discussions about the look, feel, taste, texture of foods and how our families use those foods at home.
- Learning about new foods and their origins.
- Talking about nutrition and healthy eating.
- Harvesting fresh vegetables and herbs from our kindy garden and observing the life cycle of fresh vegetables and herbs.
- The science of food: e.g. how does it change when heat is added or it is put in the freezer?
- Maths skills in learning terminology, quantities and fractions.
“The fun in researching and preparing the vegetables can culminate in the social and cultural celebration of food and the enjoyment of eating together.”