DIY #MyPlate Placement
I grew up under the Food Pyramid regime and my parents did their best to scale those healthy food recommendations for us kids. I'm sure I had too much Kraft Mac and Cheese and canned green beans, but I'm healthy today in part because they learned from their parents and perhaps a bit of guidance from the pyramid.
Today parents have an easier time helping their kids make healthy food choices with inspiration from our First Lady and her Let's Move initiative and new tools from the USDA in the form of My Plate, an easy to decipher icon that lays out optimal veggies, fruits, grains, protein and dairy for kids. In our family, we struggle with getting the kids to try unfamiliar foods, but we're getting there.
Our doctor reassured us that it can take many, many food introductions before junior and little miss are ready to commit to a new food. The battle continues! As I started reading more about appropriate food types and portions for our growing kids, I really latched on to the My Plate program and the ease with which kids can use a visual to help guide them to health food choices at home with the family and at school when they're away from my haranguing.
I've whipped up this DIY #myplate placemat to do with the kids to give them ownership of their healthy eating. With a few pens, paper and scrap fabric you have all the supplies you need. Start by setting up your art station. Consider Satsuma Designs' art mat and kids art smock to keep clean when the creativity flows.
Then go to it! When you've created your #myplate images (be sure to include, dairy or non-dairy substitute along with utensils and napkins to encourage polite table habits) ask the kids to help you gather up your goodies and take them to your local FedEx Office (fka FedEx Kinkos) store to laminate the items into a #myplate placemat. Use the 11"x17" laminate sleeve for $3.99 plus tax. Now the kids have a hand crafted #myplate placemat to help guide them to healthy eating every day. Convincing them of the benefits is up to you! Good luck and bon apetit!