September is here, and so is the school bus! Keeping kids fueled with nutritious food throughout the day is just one of the many ways to ensure their success at school. While buying a school lunch is a great option for many children, some families choose to pack lunches at home. Saving money, knowing what their kids are eating, or meeting special dietary needs are just some of the reasons families “brown bag” their mid-day meals during the school year. Concerned that food from home is going to get boring after a while? Don’t be! With a little creativity, you and your kids can enjoy all the benefits of a homemade lunch and have fun with your food, too. Here are 5 Ways to Make Lunch Fun:
1. Let kids play with their food
Before eating an apple, play with it! Turn an ordinary apple into an edible puzzle with this simple tutorial from Cute Food for Kids. Tons of lunchtime inspiration is in store for you at this site, where you’ll find dozens of ways to make healthy food more exciting.
2. Give them something to laugh about
It may be the same old PB&J your child prefers, but that doesn’t mean lunch has to be boring! At The Gunny Sack, you’ll find jokes to print out and add to your children’s lunch boxes for every day of the school year. Even their classmates will look forward to seeing what you’ve put in the lunch box, each day.
3. Surprise them
While kids may not want to be surprised with tofu instead of turkey, you can still add an element of suspense to lunchtime with a hidden message. Come Together Kids shows how to use a banana to deliver a super-sneaky secret message along with a nutritious snack.
4. Think out of the box
Ohdeedoh is ready with inspiration if you want to take a walk on the wild side of the cafeteria. Check out their feature on ways to transform ordinary food into extraordinary culinary adventures.
5. Offer encouragement
You may not see them during the day, but packing your kids’ lunch boxes is one way to remind them that you care. Add a little encouragement to eat their fruits and veggies and give kids a boost of confidence during lunch hour with these easy printables from Alphamom.
So, what’s your strategy for feeding kids during the school year? Do you rely on the lunchladies, pack your own, or find a balance between the two?