Meal Mapping with Kids…

A couple of weeks ago I posted a post on How to Feed Se7en. And when I wrote it I knew that I wanted to get our kids more involved in meal planning or at least to realize that this is what there is for the week and this is what we will be eating. Not just their personal favorite (carrots!) every night.

Well today is World Health Day so I thought it would be as good a day as any to introduce a healthy eating plan/chart to our kitchen.

So this is what you are aiming for:

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Let’s Meet the Players:

  • old magazines
  • scissors
  • card
  • markers
  • glue
  • tick-tack – you may call this something different: it is the semi-squishy stuff you put behind pictures to temporarily put them up on a wall, like chewing gum but not!

Let’s Play the Game:

Step 1: We started out with a heap of magazine pages and snipped out foods that we eat.

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And very soon we had a whole pile of food good to go. The things we couldn’t find in magazines we drew.

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Step 2: Then everyone fell into their own roll – and we have a lot of Chiefs:

  • Chief Scribe:

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  • Chief Snipper of Drawings:

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  • Chief Gluer:

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  • Chief Artist:

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  • Chief Snipper of Magazines:

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  • Chief cutter outer of any picture I like… little miss distracted!

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Step 3: We plotted a grid, days of the week down the side and meals along the top: breakfast, morning snack (usually fruit), lunch, afternoon snack (popcorn or banana bread or whatever we bake), supper.

Step 4: We stuck down all things that are always the same… pizza on Saturday, pasta on Tuesday and so on.

Step 5: We needed a vegi-box. We order our fruit and vegetables from a local co-op. They arrive on a Thursday and we need to plan a little to make sure that they all get eaten by the next Thursday! So this is what’s left in this weeks box.

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We didn’t glue these down because our vegi-box changes every week. We used tick tack to stick these temporarily. And we popped it in a plastic sleeve with potential pictures slipped into the back.

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Step 6: We used tick-tack to stick the food that varies onto our chart. I did intend to stick little magnets into the back of our food items, only to discover that someone had been at my magnet supply before me. Anyway, this is what our Meal Map Chart looks like so far this week.

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Step 7: So for this week: For breakfast we are having cereal or porridge. Morning snack is fruit. Lunch a flat bread or potato wedges and one or two raw vegetables (beans and carrots this week). Afternoon snack is popcorn or banana bread. Supper is pasta, rice or potatoes and some vegi’s… and usually chicken, fish, pasta sauce…

That’s it! We now have a Meal Map Planned Out for the Week stuck up on the fridge. When we get to a meal whoever is helping me gets to choose from “the vegi box” and away we go…

I popped this post onto The Works For Me Wednesday Site – go and have a look there for all sorts of tips on absolutely anything.

21 Replies to “Meal Mapping with Kids…”

  1. Hello! I had to comment because I saw your profile photo (with the little people lined up) on a comment YOU made … I love that photo! I adored Little People as a child, and love that photo 🙂
    Anyway, this is a great plan. You are so organized, and with 7 no less? You inspire me!

  2. Hi! I’ve been reading your blog for a few months and I think this is the first time I’ve commented. I love your idea for the meal planning. I love trying to plan out our menu. Do you have a pic of the final product or a place where I could see an example. I think you wrote it out very clearly…but I’m a visual person. Sorry. 🙂

    Love your site!!

  3. Hi S, Thank you so much for commenting! Always nice to meet a reader! The first picture in the post is the picture of it finished on our fridge…. We can just move the vegi box to fill in the rest of the week. There are more pictures on flicker if you want a closer look. You take care and have a great weekend!

  4. What a neat idea! I love the pictures – and this would certainly be fun. Perhaps I could even take digital pics of meals we’ve made (that we’ll eat again), print them out, and put those up… Thanks for the tip!

  5. Hi C… I love your idea!!! Since so many of our meals are repeats!!! Stir fry, spaghetti and meatballs – you are a genius!!! Thanks for stopping by!

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