- Learn math concepts
- Enhance sensory and social awareness
- Practice language skills
- Small plastic bowls
- Large spoon
- Several plastic knives (for children)
- Large knife (for an adult)
- Paper or plastic plates
- White paper, tempera paint, and smocks
Set Up and Prepare
Send a note home to inform families that the children are requested to bring in their favorite fruit as a way to learn about one another. On the day that the activity is planned, have several extra pieces of fruit handy just in case someone forgets to bring her own.
Step 1: Invite everyone to bring his or her piece of fruit to the meeting area. Write the question, "What is your favorite fruit?" on the board. Then go around the circle and invite everyone to show what she brought. Record the children's responses, review their comments, and engage them in a discussion about the fruit that they brought in. How many children like the same fruit? Are there any fruits that they have never seen before?
Step 2: Ask children to place their fruit in the middle of the circle. How are the fruits similar? How are they different? Invite them to touch and smell the fruits. Create a language experience chart to record their observations.
Step 3: Explain that they will use their fruit to make a fruit salad bar for their snack. Divide them into two small groups, each led by an adult. Begin by washing hands and reviewing cooking safety rules. Invite children to help wash, peel, and cut the fruits. Have an adult cut the harder fruits first and give the pieces to the children so that they can safely cut them. Ask them to place the different fruits into individual bowls.
Step 4: Give each child a bowl and invite them to make their own fruit salad. Before they eat, invite them to name the different fruits that they chose.
Step 5: Invite children to make a drawing about their fruit day. Provide them with large white paper and tempera paint. Once their paintings have dried, ask them to share their work.
Remember: At this age, some children are not enthusiastic about trying new foods and some have an aversion to specific types of food textures. Offer everyone the opportunity to participate and to touch and smell the different types of fruits. However, do not require them to eat fruit if they do not want to.
Choose some lively music for the children to dance to. Tell them that they will first follow your movement, and then you will stop the music. When you turn it back on, the child next to you will lead the dance. Continue the process until everyone has had an opportunity to dance.
Send a note home to families explaining that their child will be creating a picture that shows the different types of fruits they eat in their home. Include a sheet of oak tag paper for the children to use. Tell them that their child can draw the picture or cut out pictures of fruits from magazines or supermarket circulars to make a collage. Remind families that it is fine if their child's drawing does not look like the actual fruit. Children can write or dictate information about their picture.