Playing with food

Age group

3-5 yrs

Number of children:

3-7 ppl

Areas it develops: perception, detection, sensory integration, eye-hand coordination, using of tools, fine motor skills

Exploring different tastes, textures, using tools/machines and guessing/recognising tastes. Children can practice pinching motions, targeted movements as well as improve their fine motor and motor planning skills. Plus, their sensory integration, undertanding abstract concepts and vocabulary will get better too.

Sensory play sparks imagination, allowing a child to investigate the boundaries of the five senses-hear, smell, sight, touch, and taste. The exposure to various textures has a positive impact on a child’s sensitivity to foods and develops a sense of comfort with new stimuli. It supports language development also as parents and educators “talk through” the characteristics that each sensory activity highlights.


  • cucumber
  • carrot
  • cherry tomato
  • fruits
  • cheese
  • etc

Buffet table


Chop the veggies and larger fruits, grate or slice some cheese. Place the pieces together with the kids into smaller containers, like chocolate boxes or ice cube trays. Let them try everything, get familiar with textures. The way children have to pick up the food (with pinching motion, with a tootpick…) should be varied.

Food tasting


Once all the foods have been tried and named, let’s play an identification game (but not with too many pieces)! Blindfold a child, place something on their plate and let the child identify the food by tasting it. (the child might identify the food just by touching it but it’s important to ask them to eat it too, so that the touch-taste association will be made in their brain).