Enjoying Farmers Markets with Kids
Fall is the perfect time to enjoy a farmer’s market and to feast on Mother Nature's best flavours. So don't delay, grab the kids and head out to the market, to bring some beautiful colours indoors and onto your dinner plate!
Farmers markets are great. This is a time for kids to learn food can be fun and to find out how and where their food is grown. They can meet farmers face to face. Encourage them to ask questions but most of all, make sure they get to taste some of the great foods they find.
Here are some tips to make it a fun and educational outing with your kids…
▪ Visit the market’s website before heading out. Find out if there are special activities or children’s performers. There may even be kids’ cooking classes offered, or special seasonal events.
▪ Give the kids their own spending money and the responsibility to select what they can afford. They may want to buy a treat at the bakery or find a locally-made craft souvenir on a vendor’s table. Monitor the transaction to make sure it’s a success.
▪ Teach your kids about choosing the freshest of vegetables and fruit. Though you can bet the experience will be different from that of the supermarket. There won’t be as much wilted or bruised produce.
▪ Give the kids a shopping tote. They will love toting around some of the purchases. They’ll feel grown-up and responsible.
▪ Involve your kids in weighing, counting, and paying for purchases. These activities build math skills.
▪ Let them choose lunch from the food vendors. You’ll find all kinds of delicious fare which will be very different (and healthier) than the food court at the mall. Give them the opportunity to taste something new.
▪ Make it a game to find the most unusual fruit or vegetable. What will the kids spot? Purple potatoes? Orange cauliflowers? Yellow tomatoes?
Enjoy this experience with your kids. The colours, smells, and variety will make you cherish the simple things and appreciate what farmers do to help us enjoy healthy food. Search out a market near you.