A Treasury of Child-Rearing Advice

公益財団法人仙台観光国際協会 Sendai Tourism, Convention and International Association.

Material Compilation: Sendai City Ayashi Nursery, Ochiai Nursery, Kumagane Nursery
Material Provision: Nursery Section, Children’s Future Bureau, City of Sendai
Editing and Translation: Sendai International Relations Association


HOME Age 3 > Children’s Meals (3-4 years)

Age 3

Children’s Meals (3-4 years)

A meal with the whole family!
Doesn`t it taste better when we all eat together?

Around three years, children begin to use chopsticks and learn to eat like adults. But does it seem like your three-year-old has become even pickier about what they eat? If you know a little about the eating habits of three-year-olds you can enjoy your meals together more.

From Spoons to Chopsticks

  • When your child begins to hold spoons and forks like a pencil, always positioning their five fingers in the same way, they will be able to eat skillfully. When that happens, it’s time to move on to chopsticks.
  • If you push your child to use chopsticks too early, they may get in the habit of holding them incorrectly, which can be difficult to unlearn.
  • Chopsticks made of wood and bamboo grip food better and are easier for children to use.

Has your child gotten pickier about food?

As your child`s senses of taste and smell develop, they may start to dislike sour foods and be influenced by the way food looks. You may be troubled by your child’s likes and dislikes, but if you tell them “It`s good for you” and “It`s yummy,” they may understand and begin eating even foods they don’t like. When they do, be sure to praise them a lot so they will continue to expand their tastes.

I love helping!

Children at this age are overflowing with interest in many things. They especially love the kitchen. Don’t turn your child away, saying, “It`s dangerous” or “Later,” but let them start off with small tasks that they is able to do. Take them grocery shopping and say things like, “Oh, this looks yummy!” to help them remember the names of different foods and get them interested in them.

  • Cutting out cookies

  • Stringing beans

  • Peeling onions

  • Carrying dishes

  • Setting the table

  • Shopping together