Posted on April 12, 2012 by rebeccascritchfield
Big Apple Bound
I’m so excited to have the opportunity to watch this awesome Italian culinary experience next Monday April 16, 2012 in New York City. I was invited by Barilla to come watch as they partner with the Italian American Committee on Education (IACE) to sponsor a cooking series for kids called “Eat Healthy and Speak Italian”. It’s held at The International Culinary Center in New York City so I’ll be taking the train up for the day to see kids learn about food and cooking from professional chefs, and even how to speak Italian!
Kids Can Cook
Healthy adults start out by being healthy kids. More and more people care about where their food is coming from, which is great. Kids will get involved with cooking when given the opportunity. It’s a great way to bond with them and spend “WE time”. Getting kids into the kitchen is so important in helping them form healthy relationships with food and help promotes their own personal wellness and self care.
In a previous post I talked about the importance of family meals, and the fact that research has shown that kids who share family meals 3 or more times per week are more likely to be in a normal weight range, have healthier eating patterns, and are less likely to engage in disordered eating.
Here’s a little background on the event:
The educational cooking classes are a celebration of Italian food and culture, where students ages 10-15 will learn to cook traditional and nutritious pasta dishes from scratch. Renowned Italian Chef Cesare Casella, Dean of The School of Italian Studies at The International Culinary Center, will teach students to make authentic Italian recipes, demonstrating the same techniques used in the school’s professional culinary career programs.
The kids will even get the opportunity to prepare dishes including whole grain pastas and fresh vegetables. Working with whole grain pasta is such a quick and easy way to get a wholesome dinner on the table. For a quick primavera, you just need to mix fresh or frozen veggies with store bought pasta sauce and whole grain pasta and you have dinner in 15 minutes!
Stay tuned to hear more about my experience at the event Monday! In the meantime, check out Barilla’s website for some tasty recipes.
Filed under: children, cooking, eating healthy, food, nutrition | Tagged: Barilla, cooking, fun, healthy eating, kids | Leave a Comment »
Posted on February 16, 2012 by rebeccascritchfield
Yesterday, I was fortunate enough to be a part of Panera Bread’s Wellness Day for Fort Foote Elementary School! Fort Foote Elementary School’s mascot is the Bear and suitably, their motto is “Believing in Education and Reaching for Success” (BEARS)! The children that I met this morning were certainly excited to learn and were a fun, outgoing group to teach!
We brought MyPlate to life with an interactive game and an engaging lesson in nutrition. We used our imaginations and helped Andy the Astronaut fly back home to Planet Power, once his plate was balanced so he had enough energy for the trip home! I gave the children an association word for each food group on MyPlate: fruit/energy, vegetables/vitamins, protein/muscles, grains/brains and dairy/strong bones. The children interacted by making gestures (such as making their muscles flex or pretending to peel a banana) and screaming the words out – and seemed to be having a lot of fun! After 5 volunteers picked their favorite food from a specific food group, they handed the food to Andy and watched as his engine fueled up. Finally, it was time for blastoff, and the children helped Andy successfully land on Planet Power.
MyPlate is a great resource, and is more helpful than its predecessor, MyPyramid. The guidelines are clear and easy to understand and apply, such as making half your plate fruits and veggies. Also, the focus on balance and variety, which are key concepts in nutrition. The new guidelines, along with the clear visual, are also kid-friendly so it is easy for your children to understand the basic elements of proper nutrition. The MyPlate logo depicts an applicable visual for anybody to picture their plate and ideal servings of food groups. I think this is a great resource to use in order to plan or track meals – and the MyPlate website offers a ton of cool benefits for free! What are your favorite ways to make half of your plate fruits and veggies?
Filed under: nutrition | Tagged: children, education, elementary school, food, fun, MyPlate, USDA, wellness, wellness day | Leave a Comment »