A Muffin Tin Snack Tray has become a favorite snack idea in our house – for me as a mom and for my kids.
Honestly, there have been times it has even turned into the perfect meal idea!
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How does it work? I’ll show you!
I take our 12-cup muffin pan –
filling each cup with healthy snack options for my kids.
You may choose to do a snack tray filled with lots of different kinds of fruit.
Or you may choose to turn this idea into a meal, adding protein options such as nuts, meat, cheese, etc.
Over the years, I’ve used this idea lots of different ways: breakfast, lunch, or dinner – or anything in between!
This is such a versatile option for both snack times or meal times.
I first started doing this when my oldest kids were little, but it is an idea that has grown with our family!
These days, my kids love to help put these together.
They like the variety that comes with food being presented this way.
Growing up with this idea, there have been many times when it has helped my kids feel excited about trying something new.
Presented in a different way, they maybe would have resisted trying something, but this just seems like so much more fun.
So they go for it!
Lessons to Teach Younger Kids
Lesson #1: SHARING the Pan.
If your kids never argue, fight, or compete with one another, feel free to skip this lesson, but we’re still working on those things here. ha!
Struggling with this one?
Try filling one half of the tray with the exact same thing as the other half of the tray!
Lesson #2: MATH Galore!
We talk about things like:
- counting to twelve – 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
- counting to twelve by 2’s – 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12
- addition – 3 + 3 + 3 + 3 = 12 or 4 + 4 + 4 = 12 or 6+6=12
- arrays – 3 x 4 = 12 or 4 x 3 = 12
- fractions – half of 12 is 6, fractional portions of fruit, etc.
and on and on this can go – including both younger AND older kids.
There are few places that gift us with more number experiences than the kitchen!
When your kids can SEE math in their day-to-day, THAT’S when it will click, and if your crew is anything like ours, we are all about experiencing FOOD. Ha!
- Involve your kids in using kid-safe utensils to cut the fruit.
- Read The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle (or watch the animated version on YouTube), and eat what the caterpillar eats – as he eats it!
- Include snacks that begin with a certain letter of the alphabet: Now I Eat My ABCs has some great ideas!
- Use these Farmer’s Market Flashcards from The Littles & Me to take the teaching moments even further!