Montessori-Inspired Food Art

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Montessori-Inspired Food Art (Tractor Design by Tom Parkin)

Montessori-Inspired Food Art (Tractor Design by Tom Parkin)

Although this isn’t a traditional Montessori activity, I love the idea of Montessori-inspired food art for fun, creativity, and encouraging healthy eating. Montessori-inspired food art can be as simple or as complex as you and your child or students wish. It can be used as a creative activity in some form at any age.

Montessori-Inspired Food-Art Ideas

Fruit Flower (Design by Tom Parkin and Christina Chitwood-Parkin)

Fruit Flower (Design by Tom Parkin and Christina Chitwood-Parkin)

I’m art challenged, so I asked for help with this project. I simply provided healthy foods – fruits in this case – and asked my daughter and son-in-love to create designs. They’re adults, so their examples aren’t representative of preschoolers’ food art. But the concept is the same.

If you like, you can provide examples of food-art designs such as these in cards or photos according to your child’s ability to copy patterns. If you’d enjoy the process, you could make food-art design cards similar to the recipe cards in this post: Favorite Recipes for Preschoolers are Often the Easiest.

With counting and pattern matching, it could also be a math activity for preschoolers. If you’re wondering about having children copy food-art designs, read this post by Carolyn at Inspired Montessori and Arts at Dundee Montessori: Copying Makes Artists? YES!

You can vary the foods you provide on a tray for your child’s designs according to your child’s skills in food preparation. An activity such as the fruit flower would be for a child who could slice fruits unless you slice the fruits yourself. Here are lots of ideas to help your child develop food-preparation skills: Montessori-Inspired Food Preparation for Preschoolers.

After your children have created their food-art designs, I recommend leaving the finished creations in their snack area or on a low shelf of your refrigerator for them to eat as snacks. I definitely encourage the use of healthy foods for food art whenever possible. Food art increases interest in the food, and it’s always best when that food is healthy!

Have fun! :)

UPDATES: For more healthy-eating inspiration, I have a Montessori-inspired fruit unit and Montessori-inspired vegetable unit.

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