Browsing all articles from October, 2011

LANA Featured on WCCO – CBS News Minnesota

Posted Posted by Lana the Iguana in Articles & Inspiration, News and Events     Comments No comments

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Video viewable here: WCCO/CBS News MN Features LANA

ROSEVILLE, Minn. (WCCO) – Children and vegetables can be like oil and water. They just won’t mix.

So when 3- and 4-year-olds are grabbing slices of green pepper by the handful, it’s easy to wonder how they grew to love eating their veggies.

During snack time at Kinderberry Hill Child Development Center in Roseville, teachers have been trying a new way to teach kids about healthy eating. A green iguana puppet named Lana encourages the kids to try fruits and vegetables.

“As soon as you put Lana on, (the kids’) faces light up and they know it’s time to try something new,” says Megan Recksiedler, a teacher at Kinderberry Hill.

LANA stands for Learning About Nutrition through Activities. The program was developed by the University of Minnesota for caregivers, whether at home or in a child care setting.

One example of snack time is having the kids learn about different types of peppers. Each of the children try a red, green, and yellow pepper and are then asked which one they liked the best.

“I liked all of them,” one student said.

The teacher then asks the children if they’d like “kisses” from the puppet Lana, which they really seem to enjoy.

Recksiedler says parents should be able to apply some of the techniques used in the LANA program at home.

“If you taste it with them, that’s a great way for them to try it too,” says Recksiedler.

Before the kids can eat their snack, they get familiar with the food, touching it and learning what color it is.

Teachers say including a “fun” sauce to dip the veggies in always helps as well.

If you want to learn some of the ways to get kids interested in eating healthier snacks, try out some of LANA’s recipes. Here are their tips for kiwis and strawberries.

Love for Lana at NAEYC Conference!

Posted Posted by Lana the Iguana in Articles & Inspiration     Comments No comments

By Anne Roy, Executive Program Director at Kinderberry Hill Child Development Center

Is it crazy to love an iguana named Lana?

Perhaps, but the NAEYC Conference is less than a month away, and I am so excited for the opportunity to talk about her and the LANA preschool program! At the conference I will share how we have been successful implementing the LANA Preschool program at our center. We love it!

Before LANA, I never would have thought we’d be serving the children sweet potato smoothies for a snack….or that they would actually enjoy it! The LANA program has so
many wonderful activities and ideas to get children excited about eating fruits and vegetables, and amazingly they work! The teachers and I are even eating healthier…when we need a little snack, instead of reaching for the animal crackers, we head to the kitchen for leftover sugar snap peas! So you see, I love the iguana and what she has to offer, and I am looking forward to letting everyone know more about it!

At the NAEYC conference, I will talk about all the various components of the LANA preschool program, the ways you can modify it for your needs, tips on how it has worked for us, and then you’ll even have the opportunity to make and eat a LANA snack! I hope you join me!