One great way to involve your little one in the earliest stages of food preparation is to include them in the grocery shopping.
If you're comfortable bringing your child to the store, allow them to hold their own grocery list. A baby as young as 12 months can observe and imitate how you use a shopping list.
Starting with a list of just pictures. Then, after some practice you can move on to a list with words.
We've put together a toddler-friendly grocery list just for you. Read the tips below, then download and print the shopping list.
Printable Grocery List For Monti Kids Families
3 tips for grocery shopping with a toddler:
1. Go shopping with a full belly and a full sleep tank.
Setting your little one up for success in the store is crucial – going hungry or tired doesn’t do that. When rested and content you’ll both have more patience to get your job done and have fun doing it too! Remember if things go south quickly it’s ok to walk out and try again another time.
2. Make it an experience!
Talk about everything you are doing and buying - and even some things you aren’t. First, Name EVERYTHING – there’s never too much to know! Then, smell and feel the fruits and vegetables you are buying (hint: scratch the surface of citrus and other fruits to get a whole new burst of smells). Lift up different boxes, containers, and jugs and compare their weights and temperatures. All of these conversations will help your little one to classify and organize not only the foods at the store but new language to use in other contexts later too!
3. Practice Grace and Courtesy (the Montessori phrase for manners).
Hold the door for others and thank those that hold it for you – narrating, “I said thank you to that kind person who held open the door for us,” goes much further than asking your little one to do the thanking – he’ll absorb this practice and someday surprise you with it all on his own. Say hello to fellow shoppers, thank the employees you interact with, and apologize or say, "Excuse me," in appropriate situations, too. Our little ones are learning to be kind humans from us, their first and greatest teacher, so all of these interactions will be ones we hope to see come from them someday!
Did you know that Monti Kids makes a Montessori Cooking Together Kit that helps support families sharing kitchen skills with their little ones?
Montessori Cooking Together Kit
encourages little ones to build skills and confidence in the kitchen as they develop healthy eating habits
Wooden Stand for Recipe Cards
10 Innovative Recipe Cards
Child-Sized Wooden Spoon, Whisk, and Masher
3 Bowls for Food Prep, Small Pitcher, and Silicone Cutting Board
Melon Baller, Spreader, and Tongs
Wooden Crinkle Cutter