Building Sticks

roasted potato sticks (home-made fries), carrot sticks and dried apple sticks.

A great way to get kids interacting with food is to play with food and a great way to get into food-play is to start with physical play like building. For this activity, choose foods that naturally are, or can be cut into, firm strips. Include at least one food your child is comfortable touching. You can also add foods you want them to become more familiar with and eventually want them to add to their diet.

Then, build away and pretend! Play with the food like you would play while building something out of toys. Make your house into a castle, a barn, a garage…your imagination is the limit! Try not to add other toys like action figures or cars to the food tray, though. The idea is for your child to touch foods. If you want to pretend about people, try pretending one of the kinds of food is people. If you need cars, add some ‘Cauliflower cars’ or whatever you have in the fridge.

Be sure your child has the oral motor, chewing and swallowing skills needed for the foods you choose. Then, use this food play idea as a guide, have fun and make the activity your own.

Enjoy and happy food-play!

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