My daughter loves fruit and vegetables to the extreme. She begs me for extra servings of things like avocado, broccoli, and peas almost every day. She has always had very mature taste buds. Even when I tempt her with glazed donuts for breakfast my child turns her nose up to them in favor of steak and eggs. I ask her if she wants a cookie and she replies, "Nope! I want bwo-co-lee and mango!" This is a great thing and I consider myself very lucky not to have the nightly dinner struggle that some parents of picky eaters endure. I can even use vegetables as collateral, like some parents use lollipops or jelly beans. The words, "get out of the bathtub right now or I'm giving your sister all the broccoli!" not only works like a charm, but also are packed with vitamins.
To celebrate her love of fruits and veggies we have been checking out library materials that follow that theme, but if your child is not as gung-ho for the tomato try out these books and video and see if they'll give peas a chance.
Fruits and Veggie Themed Library Material
Go, Go, Grapes by April Sayres- This book, brand new to the library,was a big hit. It is a follow up to Sayre's Rah, Rah Radishes: A Vegetable Chant. This book pictures real-life images of fruits and fruit stands behind boldly colored backgrounds. The text on each page is brief, a sentence or two, but features rhyming and alliteration, which will keep the attention of small children. Lines such as, "Savour the flavors, find fruity shapes" encourage interaction with your child. We had a great time naming the fruits on each page before I read the text.
Ripe : a Fresh, Colorful Approach to Fruits and Vegetables by Cheryl Sternman Rule - This is actually an adult book but as soon as I saw it I knew it would be very kid friendly. It is arranged by color starting with red and each page features a different fruit, which are beautifully illustrated taking up an entire page. It is a hefty book, at 312 pages, so parents may need to hold it or enforce the "look, but don't touch" rule. I cannot say enough wonderful things about this book and how awesome it is for kids. It's a very comprehensive book. You've got your heavy hitters like bananas, peaches, apples, and raspberries, but there are also the lesser known edibles such as rhubarb, kumquats, bok choy, and a new family favorite, jimaca. When we got to rhubarb my daughter exclaimed, "I love reading this book! Can we eat rhubarb?" My only experience with rhubarb is listening to Garrison Keillor sing about it on A Prairie Home Companion so I guess I am now on a mission.
Growing up Hello Kitty: Hello Kitty Eats her Vegetables - This DVD actually has multiple episodes that features good manners and how to behave. Episode subjects range from the importance of eating vegetables and cleaning your room to properly answering the phone.