Simply Delicious Food Unit Study for Homeschool Preschool

Our nutrition and food unit study had tons of hands-on learning in the kitchen, but we also introduced fractions, lots of sensorial work, and of course plenty of language work as well!

Pin image that reads food groups homeschool Montessori inspired nutrition preschool unit study for fun and learning at home with an image of our homeschool shelf for our food unit study

For our nutrition and food unit study, we talked all about how different foods are good for different parts of our body, to what makes a food fit into a specific food group. We also talked about how diverse food is and what different kinds of cooking looks like!

Does your preschooler like to help cook?! That was a major part of our food group unit study! Hands-on learning for the win!

Books will always be a huge part of our homeschool unit studies

You can find all of the food group and diverse cooking books that we used for our homeschool preschool space unit study that we used in this post!  There were so many I just couldn’t put everything in one post

a pin image  that reads food books for homeschool preschool with an image of a bunch of books about food and cooking

Planning Homeschool Preschool Work Shelves 

When I’m planning a unit study, I tend to plan about 10-12 activities to have on our work shelf and I try to have two of each of five major categories. This lesson plan will last us 2-3 weeks of “school” time.

Language– this could be things like working with a movable alphabet or introducing new vocabulary with three-part cards or phonics games

Numbers – this could be working with our colored beads, our red and blue rods, bead hangers or math link cubes

Sensorial – this is where you’ll see a lot of the traditional Montessori sensorial materials, things like the brown stair and the pink tower, knobbed cylinders, and knobless cylinders, but we’ll also have things that will work on differentiating size or weight.

Fine motor – this is where you’ll see things like beating lacing, sewing, cutting, and tracing

Other – this category sort of acts as an overflow for game schooling (bingo and memory), puzzles, and sorting activities. Really this is just where I plug in a couple more activities that I really want to add to the shelf even if they overlap with other categories.

a pin image that reads homeschool preschool foods unit study with images of some of the activities that we did to learn about foods and nutrition

Depending on how in-depth and how interested your little learner is could dictate if you need a rotation with further work on the topic

I only prepared one lesson plan for this unit as I knew we would be out of town for Thanksgiving for a week and when we got back I wanted to take a reset month to observe and have lots of time for fun holiday activities!

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Nutrition and Food Group Unit Study Works

We do a fair amount of baking with the girls and have come across times that it would be good if Bitty understood fractions a bit better so that was one of the goals when I sat down to plan our Homeschool Preschool Food Unit Study. I also wanted to include nutrition, because she has been asking ‘What does this have in it?’ ‘Why do we have to eat that?’

a homeschool preschool food-themed Montessori inspired play at home learning unit lesson plan that covers one on one lessons, shelf work craft projects and sensorial play ideas

Language Works

Herb 3 part cards and dried herbs

herb 3 part cards and poster with dried herbs in metal spice pots laying on a rug

We used them for matching activities as well as proper Montessori three-part lessons

My book of Food Groups

Each day we focused on a singular planet and sort of narrowed down the three or four most notable things about it. We then created a page in a blank book for her to be able to “read” after

Alphabet Roll with A-Z food cards

a white ABC mat with red and blue letters painted on it and a small wicker tray with cards with different foods on them laying on the rug

Using my DIY Alphabet roll and food cards we looked at the beginning letter of the food and matched it to the mat

Number Works

DIY fractions puzzle

we worked with this a fair amount noticing how some parts could mix and match like 1/2 and 1/4 but the 1/3 couldn’t.

a wooden puzzle with 4 squares for and wooden puzzles pieces in a basket laying on the rug

DIY felt build a burger with recipe cards

The goal of this work was to have her pay attention to details and follow the “recipe” perfectly.

felt food pieces in a wooden tray with printed visual recipes for sandwiches

Sensorial Works

Eating the Rainbow Cutting Strips and Color Sorting

Some great fine motor work with the scissors and then observation skills to color match the foods

a set of rainbow foam mats and printed images of food in a rainbow of colors with dotted lines between the images and a pair of scissors

Smelling Bottle Matching

A DIY of a classic Montessori sensorial material using essential oil roller bottles with cotton wicks and oils for sent

a set of amber roller bottles filled with cotton balls laying in a wooden tray

Knobbed Cylinders

a series of 3D posting puzzles that deal with the variations in width or length or a combination of those – my hope is always to entice Bitty to these, but she rarely does. Bean on the other hand greatly enjoys exploring them so I will take what I can get

3 wooden puzzles with varying sizes of cylinder peices with tiny knobs on each cylinder

Fine Motor Works

Tong Transfer of Food Counters

A rainbow of food counters (fruit & veggies) and a recycled tray for her to explore. Ideally, she will use the tongs to transfer the counters into the tray. Color sorting, patterns, grouping, and matching are all potential work to be done with this tray

red and yellow plastic tongs, a small silver colander filled with a bunch of different colored food counters in a variety of shapes, and a white plastic tray with lots of compartments. there is a diagonal row of counters in the white tray in the order of a rainbow

DIY insets and smelly markers

Simple geometric stencils to trace. You can mix and match them to make more complex drawings as well. I left this out as she was using it so actively last month, but it got much less work during this unit

a wooden tray with 4 MDF DIY insets, an ovoid, a square, a triangle, and a circle, two on each side of a smaller wooden tray that holds a selection of double-ended markers

Other Works

Food Group Sorting

a standing pocket chart and cards covering the 5 major food groups, feature common foods for Bitty to sort

a blue slotted mat that is holding some food group cards and a basket of more cards with a variety of foods on them

Farm Products Printable

A simple puzzle that shoes the pant food grows on, how it’s harvested, and what we turn it into.

a poster showing food progression from plant to products, a small basket with cards showing the different steps from the poster, and a blank poster to recreate the steps

Food Unit Study Tot School Work

A few of the activities that I put out on the shelf are very geared towards my 18-month-old, in case we are working at the shelves when she is awake. In total transparency, we aren’t often over here in the mornings so these activities have been mostly ignored by Bean, but Bitty will occasionally go to them and that’s fine too!

Cracking Eggs

wooden eggs with “yolk” pompoms to discover for a fine motor matching activity

a white paint pallette with 6 circle slots, in each circle there is a wooden egg

Lacing Watermelon

fine motor and problem-solving toy – we also have a cheese one as well

a dark wooden tray with a wooden watermelon toy that is covered in holes, attached to the watermelon is a blue string that has a green caterpillar attached to the other end

Measuring Cups and Spoons

great for nesting together or sorting big and little

a woven tray that has a set of silver measuring cups and a set of silver measuring spoons on it

Food Unit Crafts and Sensory Play

We did not partake in as many crafts this month, but we did lots of practical life hands-on kitchen work instead. I had a few crafts picked out in case we weren’t up for a mess in the kitchen and I will share those!

Preschool Food Unit Study Craft Ideas

a pin image that reads DIY mud kitchen rock foods with 3 images. one shows the white primed rocks, a set of paint brushes, and a set of paints, another shows out mud kitchen with all our cooking supplies and a toddler playing at the sink, the third shows a rainbow of completed mud kitchen play food

Preschool Food Unit Study Sensory Play

a pin image that read food themed sensory bin : split pea base with a rainbow of foods for the very hungry caterpillar and shows in an image if green split peas in a metal circle tray. in the tray is a metal scoop, metal funnel, and a set of metal pans each with different colored play food, and a wooden caterpillar toy

Need more ideas for a preschool Nutrition and Food Unit Study?!?

Then you should definitely check out my Homeschool Preschool Nutrition and Food Board on Pinterest! It’s full of these ideas and so many more others that we just didn’t have time for!

a pin image that reads food unit study : Montessori inspired homeschool preschool activities and books

Our homeschool food unit study taught us both something

One of the things that I love the most about homeschooling Bitty is that I am learning right along with her. Things I have forgotten or things I never knew! I always end up learning something with her! We learned so much about what different foods do for our body and what cooking and eating looks like all over the world and that is just super interesting!!!

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