In a taste test game, kids taste various foods and try to identify them. Typically, this is a blind test, and players won't know what they're eating until it goes into their mouths. You can play the game with your own kids -- it's a great way to get picky eaters to try new foods -- or with a group of children. If you're playing a game with other people's children, it's important to ask parents about a child's food allergies and to give them a list of foods you'll use before playing the game.
Things You'll Need
- Napkins or paper towels
Prepare the food for the game -- remember not to let your kids see what they'll be eating. Use a random selection or theme the tasting; for example, you could use a mix of fruit, vegetables, cheeses and spreads or you could just focus on fruit. Try to get a mix of different tastes and cut your food into small pieces or put it in small portions. Put them in bowls or containers, ideally with lids, or cover them to hide their contents.
Decide on your gameplay rules -- there are different ways to play a taste test game. For example, you can blindfold all of the children and have them taste each food at the same time before they say what they think it is. Or, you can blindfold them individually and have them taste in turn. If you do this, try to make sure that other players can't see the foods you're using.
Explain the rules of the game to the players. To get them into the spirit of the game, tell them that the child who correctly identifies most foods is the winner -- a competitive element will encourage picky eaters to join in more readily. Give out individual bowls and spoons, if you're using them, and blindfold the first child or the whole group.
Hand out the first food and ask the first taster, or the group after everyone has tried it, to try it and say what it is. If you're scoring the game, you can award a point to every player who guesses correctly or a point to the first one to get it right. Once everyone has tasted the first round, get them to drink some water to clear their palates before moving on to the next round. Total the scores at the end of the last round and announce your winner.
Tips & Warnings
- If you're playing the taste test as a party game, where the aim is to have fun rather than try new foods, you could use flavored jelly beans or candy.
- To make a game more difficult, have players hold their noses when they taste each food -- this also teaches them that they can't taste unless they can smell.
- If you're trying to encourage picky eaters to try new foods, make sure to focus on foods you know they like. It's best to introduce just one or two new foods at a time.
- If any child playing the game is allergic to a food, don't include it in the game at all, even if other players can eat it.
- Kids may get anxious if they feel they have to eat something they don't like the taste of. Reassure them that it's OK not to like something and give them kitchen towels or napkins in case they want to spit something out.
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