Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Can Your Child Open His Own Lunch Items?

a kindergarten child opening her lunch items

Preschool teachers spend much of their lunch time opening fruit cups, cheese sticks, straws for drinks and lunchables. Once they are in Kindergarten, they need to be able to open these things on their own. Can your child open his own lunch items?

Summer is a great time to see and then practice so that he can be independent when he gets to Kindergarten.

Set it Up!

Each day at lunch or snack give your child an item or items that will be apart of his typical lunch. If you've already purchased his lunch box for Kindergarten, place the items in there so he can do it just like he will in school.
a kindergarten child opening her lunch

You Can Do It!

Watch your child to see how he does. Which items are easy? Which are more difficult but he was still successful? Which items were beyond his ability? Make sure you don't jump in too quickly! I almost helped Big Sister today with her fruit cup, but after a few tries she finally got that little plastic lid off ... just enough to splash juice all over. But isn't that part of life? I didn't get upset, she just practiced cleaning it up!

a kindergarten child opening her luncha kindergarten child opening her lunch

Make it Just Right for Your Child!

After you see which items are easy, you don't have to keep practicing. For example, Big Sister does very well with the zip-top bag with her sandwich and her juice box. We don't need to keep practicing those.

a kindergarten child opening her lunch

But her fruit cup was a struggle! So, I know that I need to go to the store and pick up some more fruit cups. When we are at home we typically eat fresh fruit or from a large container of something like applesauce instead of individual servings. But, for the sake of practice, I will get her more fruit cups and let her keep practicing the fine motor skill and strength to open it until she is consistently successful!

a kindergarten child opening her luncha kindergarten child opening her lunch

Tips for Success:
  • Watch and wait to see how your child does! It may take a few tries, but that's ok!
  • If there is an item that is especially difficult (like the fruit cup) do the first part for him but then let him finish. One tip I got from my daughter's preschool director was to start to open the fruit cup just a little, drain all of the juice out and then put that in the lunch box. It won't spoil by the time lunch comes around and there's no juice to spill out! Love it!

Do you have any tips for helping kids open their own lunch items?

a kindergarten child opening her lunch

Disclosure: Some of the links in the post above may be “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Please know that I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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