This Farmer’s Market guessing-game provides the child with a fun chance to build trust with new food items, without the pressure of eating it all, in an allotted amount of time.
Step 1: Grab a blindfold or bandana. Gather food items (here, we chose a food item that corresponded with every color of the rainbow). Use familiar food items & unfamiliar food items.
Step 2: Have your child put on the blindfold or bandana. Place each food item on a plate.
Step 3: Put the plates in front of the child, one at a time.
Step 4: Ask your child to identify characteristics of food item, using their other senses. Provide them with the language to build that connection with the food in their brain.
- Is it heavy or light?
- Is it smooth, waxy, prickly?
- Does it smell fresh or sweet?
- What shape is it?
- Is it squishy or firm?
Step 5: Have them give their best guess. Assist them as necessary. Have them open their eyes to see if the food matched their guess.
Step 6: Teach them how to cut, peel apart, or even color with the food item.
If they interact with new foods for the first time, consider this a win! If this encourages them to smell or taste new foods – consider this a win, too!
- If this may be overwhelming for your child, reverse the roles. Have them give you a food item to identify. Verbalize your observations. This models confidence with interacting with new foods and provides them with the language to describe new foods.
- Have them ask you 3 questions about each food item, in order to incorporate problem-solving skills. Perhaps they will ask you, “Where do you see this food item grow?” “What color is the food item?” “When do we usually eat it?”