Our family has been on our healthy eating journey for over 10 years now. Yep. I’ve been shunning the margarine and pushing the veggies and serving the spinach and delighting in the free-range eggs for over a decade.
As a result, all of my kids hate junk food. They snack on huge bowls of greens and never ask for chips. They read all the labels and become excited when they know asparagus is on sale.
If you believe that, you should probably go read this post.
The truth is, my kids like Doritos and store-bought pizza just like most. I’ve chosen not to freak out about this, seeing as freaking out is rarely a blessing for anyone. And also: you should go read all of these thoughts. That’s where I’ve chosen to land.
So what about nutrition? How do we teach our kids about nutrition?
I hadn’t found any books that I felt taught nutrition they way I wanted. So instead, we’ve done what has come naturally:
1. We talk about it
As you can imagine, food is a popular topic in the Coppinger household. Mom loves nutrition and cooking. Dad and the boys love to eat.
Through the years I’ve shared what I’m learning about nutrition while we hang out in the kitchen or while we’re eating together. I don’t force the information, but they’ve caught the gist: Real food is where it’s at. Please pass the butter.
2. We focus on making our nourishing food taste good
One of the things I love most about real food is that the more nourishing it is, the better it tastes. There is so much good flavor in natural foods! Imagine that. We don’t have to create tasty food in a factory. God already made food amazing.
3. We model it
We continue to add more and more fruits and vegetables to our diets. Matt and I load up our own plates, and get excited about food from the garden or from Bountiful Baskets. We drink several glasses of water every day.
Ultimately, our kids are learning about nutrition because of what they see and what is available in the home. Not to worry. They also see us sometimes compromising on food choices. I like to think that since we do this without freaking out, they will have a healthy understanding of what it means to enjoy treats and will hopefully keep a relaxed perspective on food instead of making it an idol.
Why I Usually Don’t Like Books About Nutrition
I’ve had two major issues with books that teach about nutrition:
- They are too heady and overwhelming to hand to a kid. (I’m talking to you, Nourishing Traditions.)
- Or, they are based on FDA standards, which focus on eating low fat, counting calories, and eating a lot of grain products. Basically they give a lot of information as “fact” that I very much disagree with. (Dare you actually tell my child that margarine is a better choice? Oh. I don’t think so.)
So we’ve just stuck with talking about nutrition and making sure our kids eat salads and fruit and good eggs and meat, etc.
I found a book!
When I was prepping for this week’s homeschool curriculum sale, there were some books with fruits and veggies that jumped out at me (surprise, surprise) in one of the Unit Studies Packets. I contacted the author, Amy Blevins, and she was kind enough to send them to me before the sale started so I could look them over so I’d know what to tell you about them.
I knew the art work would be great. But would the nutrition information be overwhelming? Would I agree with it?
Well, it’s all I can do to wait until fall to start working through these with Malachi. (Does he really need a summer break? Fine. So do I. We’ll start in the fall.)
Man, this book is good. I’m mostly talking about the “Learning About Nutrition” section of this book (though the coloring and dot-to-dot books are fantastic for additional fun). There were just a few points I didn’t agree with, but I think those points will be good to bring up for discussion and further research.
This book is very thorough while being incredibly kid friendly. It’s just over 532 pages (some of it is just for parents), and I feel it will be such a nice unit to study with Malachi – taking just a few minutes each day to increase his knowledge of nutrition and to get him thinking more on his own about good food choices.
I really love how the book is laid out with light reading and small activities throughout (NOT just busy work, thankfully!!). There are even fun writing exercises sprinkled in. Really, I think they’ll be fun – food and creativity and nutrition can actually go together because she wrote this so well.
As you know, nutrition is one of my biggest things so telling you that I like this book kind of means something. :)
Just like all the 200+ books in this week’s curriculum sale, you’ll be amazed at majorly discounted prices. This Nutrition Unit Study pack comes in a set of 14 other unit study books – and they are all 91% off! The complete set costs less than one book normally costs.
TIP: Have big kids and little kids? That’s going to be perfect with this unit study. Littler ones can color and connect the dots while your entire family reads and studies the Learning About Nutrition book. That’s the beauty of unit studies – the whole family can learn together.
ANOTHER TIP: Pick two more bundles to go along with this one to take advantage of the Buy-2-Get-1-Free offer. Then you’ll save even more. It’s almost crazy.
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I’m excited that there is so much goodness being offered this week in this sale, at such incredible prices! So tell me – how have you been teaching your kids about nutrition?