Fun food activity for children

Teach fine motor skills and build kitchen confidence. Art & food combine in this activity.

As well as feeding school children during Covid-19, we want to do our bit to keep educating about food. Here’s a good exercise to try at home with your children. Please send us your photos if you do this. We’d love to see.

James, the Exec Chef at Harrington Hill Primary School and Grasmere Primary School, originally served this as a salad on World Book Day. The children loved it.

You need a cucumber, some sweetcorn and a tomato to recreate this. If you don’t have those vegetables, you could use raisins, or nuts, for the feet. No cucumber? Try using a broccoli stalk or kiwi instead.

Chopping teaches fine motor skills. If your child is confident enough to chop vegetables, you can teach them how. Demonstrate the Claw (picture 1 below) – keeping fingers tucked away from the blade. Or the Bridge (picture 2) – gripping both sides of the food between thumb and finger to stop it slipping – the knife is like a car going into a tunnel. Both techniques help to keep fingers out of the way of the blade. Closely supervise and encourage.

Instructions:

  • Cut the cucumber in half, lengthwise.
  • Slice into half-moons.
  • Cut three 3 smaller pieces from one of these and set them aside.
  • You need one slice of tomato for your caterpillar head, cut another into pieces for the ears.

Now build your caterpillar!

  • Arrange the moons in a curvy line.
  • Lay the last piece flat – this is the tail.
  • Position the tomato slice as the head.
  • Add your tomato ears.
  • Take the three small pieces of cucumber, that you set aside, position them on the face for the eyes and nose.
  • Put your sweetcorn feet in place.

And that’s it!

Now you can eat your Hungry Caterpillar and fill your own hungry tums.

Thanks to James for the inspiration.