A Kid DIY Snack Station!

We’ve started to allow the kids to make their own snacks!

They have shown us they are old enough and responsible enough to be able to handle this task.

The only rule we have, is that our 3 year old asks for help from his almost-5 year old sister when it comes to handling the bread (since it’s under that glass topper).

We haven’t shied from using glass items since much of the Montessori curriculum uses actual plates and real glass.  (That is not to say that things have never been broken, though!  We just replaced a ramekin which is why we have the older child help the younger one still).  :)

And if the idea of using anything glass worries you, try using tupperware or store-bought containers that lift off and clasp easily, instead!

We keep out fresh, washed fruit and dried fruit and nuts that they are allowed to take when they are hungry.

We also leave out a small amount of almond butter and honey in a mini-honey pot plus utensils for spreading.

We keep multi-grain breads and/or whole grain matzoh crackers out.

And they really enjoy doing this on their own.

They enjoy it so much they make us watch them do it.   :)

When the tongue comes out, that means he’s concentrating super-duper hard.  :)

And I  don’t feel badly about these snacks.

The Kids’ DIY Snack Station helps to foster a sense of independence but it is just good basic practice for essential life skills.

They’ve become creative with it, even making Whole Wheat Matzoh Cracker almond butter and honey dried nut and fruit pizzas for mom!  :)

How do you handle snack time at home?

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20 Responses to A Kid DIY Snack Station!

  1. Great idea! We have a “healthy snacks” box with little bags of things like shredded wheat cereal, pretzels, crackers, dried fruit, etc. I do ask them to let me know when they get something just to monitor for too many snacks ruining meals. We also have a big fruit bowl, but I have to limit visits to the fruit bowl or they will eat fruit all day and not eat meals!

    • Lisa- That’s a great idea! It would be awesome if I had to limit fruit in my kids- Part of the reason we do this is because it ups the amount of fruit they take in every day- When they are hungry, that’s what they can get so now they eat it. :) I think kids who eat too much fruit is an awesome problem to have to monitor! Lucky you! :)

  2. You’re going to have to post a “How To” on that fruit pizza! It sounds awesome. And the space availability for your snack station is yet another reason to like Laredo!

    • Chrissy- I wish I could say I was good at letting my kids into the fridge on their own. :) I’m not! My son has a tendency to get a little distracted by his yogurt drink and leaves the door open until I find it not closed. :) So, I’ve pretty much limited them to what I put out for them to access. :)

  3. I’m not being snarky. For once. Don’t pee in your pants from excitement. This is brilliant. I’m so tired of prepping snacks and trying to convince them to eat something healthy. I just might actually do this one! Really.

    Of course, I might change my mind once I sober up. ;)

    • Bridget- Really? Really, you do? I can’t believe it! haha! You are DIYourselfer! Or a TYDIY- or TWINS, YOU DO IT YOURSELVES! :)

  4. This is great! We also have a snack station for my 4-year-old. We have anywhere from 5-7 glass flip-top jars (from Ikea) on the counter at all times filled with the makings of trail mix. Peanuts, almonds, pistachios, dried fruit, dried apple rings, pumpkin seeds. I think I’ll add one full of healthy crackers after reading your post above. Thanks!

    • Margsaret- that’s a great idea! You took it one step past me- I pre-mixed the dried fruit and nuts- but I don’t have to even do that! haha! Thanks for the comment!

  5. I just set out his food, snacks, drinks on his table. I have a table appropriate for his height-children’s table in the kitchen just for him and any of his guests. I decorate his table according to the seasons and he loves it! It makes his table more special than eating at the regular kitchen table!
    So it is like a “snack station.” I am teaching him how to set up the table mats and napkins, etc. I am teaching him to pick up after himself. How to put whatever is empty (dishes or containers) in the sink or next to the sink, etc. Sometimes he wants to wash his dishes and I let him too. Things like that. But It is a great idea to leave him to prepare the snacks himself instead of leaving the snacks already made. Thanks!

    • Elizabeth- I love the idea of him having his own seasonal table! What you do sounds a lot like the Montessori Practical Life Skills our daughter learns at school- and what we are trying to implement more around the home. But, I tend to still shuffle for them more than I really need to! Love your idea!

  6. Oh my gosh, Tricia … your son’s concentration putting the peanut butter on the cracker is precious! Such a great idea to have them take care of making their own snack. Love it.

  7. This is so great! I started doing a snack bin and that worked great for awhile… until I got lazy about restocking it! I’ve been thinking about doing DIY snacks, but was waiting until my youngest (2-1/2) was just a wee bit older.

  8. I feel so torn about snacks and drink availability in our home. I want my oldest to be able to get a drink or snack independently. But with a family which includes a young toddler and older baby, how can this be done without it becoming a disaster and/or a safety hazard!?

    • Shannon- You bring up a great point- When bloggers like me write posts like this, it would be good to remember that others have children of different ages. :) I think if I were in your shoes with children capable of handling a DIY snack station (and ours has now moved toward a simpler version- a stainless steel bread box where we keep matzoh crackers, croissants or bread, nut butters, honey and a very large silicon dull peanut butter “knife” that is flexible like a spatula) and open baskets full of washed organic apples and bananas) I would ensure that THAT snack station was out of reach of the younger children- But, for the smaller children, if you have a low table or even one of those sturdy step stools that is child-height, you could keep snacks you don’t fear them eating or choking- maybe cubed apples spritzed in lemon juice to reduce oxidation, raisins, or even saltine crackers in a corner of the kitchen. If you have an Asian store or market near you, a wonderful and much less expensive solution than buying a train table or kid-sized table is to find a small Korean table with folding legs. We have several and they come in very handy for art sessions, play dates, crafting with kids AND kid snacks for little ones! I believe I will be posting about our Korea Country Presentation soon- and I will include images of these tables. I believe that something like that, or even a good, solid wooden step stool would do the trick for a young one. I hope that helps- Thank you so much for giving me something to consider in future posts….and if you try it, please do let us know what you did and how it worked out!

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