Children are naturally curious, wanting to explore and learn more about new and exciting things. So, when it comes to discussing geography, ethnicities, and cultures, food is a great (and delicious!) way to grow their knowledge.
Allowing children to experience and discover foods from different cultures is a fantastic way of expanding their understanding of the world around them, as well as nurturing their appreciation for tasty and exciting cultural dishes.
Within every culture, food plays a huge part. From normal day-to-day life to celebrations, there are huge variations depending on where you are around the world.
It’s important to remember that the key to approaching new things with most children is enthusiasm and having an open mind. By immersing children in a variety of food cultures, we are providing them with the opportunity to experience things that are normally beyond their plates and encouraging curiosity about the world around them.
We’re going to explore some ways you can incorporate exploration of food and culture with your children in simple ways.
Invite children to take part in cooking adventures by involving them in the preparation of dishes from around the world. Choose simple and age-appropriate recipes that highlight the flavours and ingredients from different cultural dishes. From sushi rolling to making Italian pasta, hands-on cooking experiences allow children to develop culinary skills while fostering an appreciation for various cultural food from around the world.
Around the World Dinner with Family
Depending on what would suit your family best, you could either do an around-the-world dinner extravaganza or gradually introduce different cultural dishes to your weekly meal schedule.
Incorporating these cultural dishes into mealtimes where you all sit together is a great way to encourage acceptance of different foods. Seeing parents eating and enjoying different tastes and flavours in cultural dishes will encourage children to taste new foods and broaden their palettes.
When you’re enjoying your meal, encourage children to taste the foods and share their thoughts on the flavours, colours, and textures. This not only gives you inspiration for other dishes but sparks conversations about different cultures.
Search for the nearest food festival to your local area, or even explore the international food sections of the supermarket. At most food festivals, there will be a variety of different cuisines available to buy, and sometimes stalls even offer samples. Allow your children to engage in finding ingredients or meals from different countries, and challenge them to identify unfamiliar ingredients, through sight, smell and taste.
At Busy Bees, we take pride in the food we serve children every day at our nurseries. The food we provide the children in our care is delicious, nutritionally balanced, diverse, inclusive and approved by NHS-Startwell.
We develop our menus and dishes based on feedback from children, parents, and staff, ensuring that our food provides everything that could be required.
With nurseries not only across the UK but also globally, you’ll notice that our menus take inspiration from a huge variety of cuisines. So, don’t be surprised to spot Moroccan chickpea and vegetable tagine or homemade pizzas on our menu in your local Busy Bees nursery. For more information about how we promote eating well, and to view our seasonal menus, visit our ‘Eating Well’ page.
Looking for a nursery for your little one? Find a nursery near you today and book a visit to learn more about the exceptional facilities and welcoming team, as well as delicious meals we offer!