My son likes to call these “food castles” or “marshmallow castles,” whatever we happen to make it out of, since he gets to stack all his food up. It’s a great snack time activity because they will snack while they work on those fine motor skills. It seems so simple but the kids really seem to enjoy it.
What you need:
- Some sort of cup for a base. I used some yogurt cups. You can also use a disposable cup and if it is too tall, just cut it down.
- A disposable plate to glue the cup on
- Plastic knife of popsicle stick for spreading
- Glue or some sort of sticky substance. I used a hot glue gun, but I guess you could use peanut butter or something else that would hold down the cup if you didn’t have anything else available.
- Some sort of substance for the food to stick to. i.e. frosting, peanut butter, yogurt, pudding frosting. I used crunchy peanut butter because I already had it on hand.
- Toppings. Whatever you have will work! I used marshmallows, craisins, sprinkles, and apple bits.
UPDATE: To make this creation completely edible: use a muffin or cupcake as a base instead of a cup
To begin, it helps if you have everything ready to go before you begin and I would not put it all with in reach of the kids until you are ready for it. My kids would not leave me alone while I was trying to put everything together and glue the cup to the plate, so I let them help me! I gave each of them their own plate with an apple slice and a plastic knife to help me cut the apples.
Step 1: Glue the cup to the plate. I used a hot glue gun. You do not need much glue. I discovered that I didn’t even have to go completely around the cup (my glue gun was being stubborn!). I just had a little bit of glue on each side and it was very sturdy.
Step 2: Start spreading. I gave each child a bowl with some peanut butter in it and a plastic knife. Younger ages may require more help when it comes to the spreading. My son is almost 4 and I just had to help him by holding his hand on the knife the first few spreads and then he caught on. My daughter is 27 months and if my son wasn’t there for her to watch she would have had a hard time. So, I probably would have put all the PB on first if she was by herself and then let her decorate it.
Step 3: Bring your “decorations” over and let them go to town on decorating. It’s fun and a little messy and, of course, tasting is okay!