Some of the most important parenting advice I can give you is to give your child a sense of belonging, responsibility, and contribution. A great way to achieve this is by having your child make their own and their family’s snacks. One way to show them how they can contribute is asking them if they could prepare “animal toasts” for the whole family, to have with snacks. This one is for bear toast, but you can also find owl toast.

Best Ages for This Activity

Two to five.

How to Make It


  • Bread or bagels
  • A toaster
  • A nut butter, butter, or any spread you normally eat
  • 1 banana for 4 people
  • 3 raisins, blueberries or chocolate chips per piece of toast
  • A tiny bit of any red jam (to make cheeks)

Let’s Get Started!

  • Your child can, with your supervision and if old enough:
    • Toast the bread or bagel (self-help skill)
    • Spread the nut butter evenly (fine motor skills and S.T.E.M.)
    • Cut the fruit evenly as in the picture (fine motor skills and math)
    • Calculate how much fruit is required per slice (S.T.E.M.mathematics)
    • Make the bear by placing the fruit as per the picture shown (fine motor skills, S.T.E.M. and social and emotional development)

If your child is younger, you can leave an image of the toast in front of them for guidance. Here are some other ideas:

Learning Opportunities

Children will learn S.T.E.M., fine motor skills, but more importantly, social and emotional development skills. Your child will:

  • Have the opportunity to contribute to their family by preparing a snack for their family, including siblings
  • Know that they are helping you at home with important work
  • Gain cooking skills
  • Gain a great amount of self-confidence and empathy

While they are preparing the snack and you are supervising, make sure you tell them how incredibly helpful this is for the family, as you have more time to finish your work, and thank them. Tell them how proud you are of them that they are able to cook for the family on their own, and once you taste it, tell them how delicious it is! Ask them what they can make next time for the family. The rest of the family (especially siblings) should of course thank them for the meal.

Get them to deliver the snack to each member of the family, with a napkin and a glass of milk for extra learning! It is a difficult task to balance a plate across the kitchen, pour the milk and carry that too, but these are essential self-help skills your child must learn. You might have to show them where to find the mop and paper towels too.

CEFA tip: Remember to let your child do as much of the process as they are capable of. This means they cut (they can use a plastic disposable knife) spread, wash, plate and deliver.