4 Ways to Teach Your Kids Where Food Comes From

4 Ways to Teach Your Kids Where Food Comes From

I'm sure you could list which of your friends are dog lovers and which prefer cats. And, I'm guessing you know a young girl or two who dream of ponies, Well, I am a chicken person. I have been dying to raise a flock of backyard chickens for years. Finally, this past March, six peeping chicks came to live with us.

It seems my daughter feels the same way. The first day we brought them home, Hazel wouldn't leave their side! She sat next to their box for hours, holding them and talking to them. I had to drag her away to eat or even use the bathroom!

She named them, took them to her room to play with her toys and carried them around on her shoulder.

After they were old enough, we moved them to their outside home. Hazel and her brother visit them at least twice a day. They bring them veggies scraps, check on their food and water and play with them. When we're working or playing outside, we even let them out of their fenced yard to hang out with us.

And, the best part? When they get a little older, the kids will be out gathering EGGS. We'll have green eggs and brown eggs, big eggs and small ones. They will be delicious and my kids will know where eggs came from and that they helped raise the chickens that make them.

If backyard chickens aren't for your family, here are a few other ideas to help your kids learn where their food is coming form:

1. Plant a garden!

Your kids can help you every step of the way—planting the seeds, weeding, watering and harvesting. If you don't have enough room in your backyard, try a garden box or container gardening.

2. Go to farmer's markets and talk to the vendors.

Your kids can talk about where the food they are selling came from and you will be modeling how to be an informed consumer.

3. Read labels with your kids at the grocery store.

This is especially easy in the produce section. Discovering that some of the onions are from California and some are from Colorado can lead to important discussions the amount of gas it took to bring food to the supermarket.

4. Buy your meat locally, and take your kids to visit the farms.

Once Hazel realized that her bacon was once an actual PIG we knew it was time for her to learn about the different types of farm animals be raised. We wanted to show her a place that raised "happy animals." Luckily we found Colorado Sustainable Farms in Calhan. They took time one morning to show our family around their ranch, explain their practices, and even let us meet some of the animals.

Mom-of-two and food lover Amanda enjoys leading by example to keep her family active and healthy in Castle Rock, Colo.

Photo of Hazel with her chickens.


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