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Kids, Don't Not Play With Your Food

Instead of reprimanding kids for playing with their food, why not see what kind of creations they can come up with using food items.

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Written by DeletedUser

This past Monday in my Asian Studies class, Cuisine and Culture in Asia, we talked about the arduous Japanese tradition of mothers making obento boxes for their children. Pictured above, these obentos are boxed lunches with small portions of rice, meat, and vegetables, packaged very carefully into a designated container. WIthout going into too much detail about the cultural implications behind this, one of the most fascinating aspects of this tradition is the requirement for the mother to create art from the food for their children to appreciate. In fact, these obentos are infamous for unbelievable intricacy and ornateness. 

While I do not intend, in any way, for kids to reach this level of intensity, I think it would be interesting to see what kinds of pictures, shapes, or designs kids can create with their food. When I was growing and it was my mom or dad's birthday, my sister and I would typically make them home-cooked meal. We would always try to arrange the food in fun shapes. In the pictures above, we made heart-shaped eggs!

I think that this would be a really fun and relatable way for kids to cultivate their creativity. I know I did!

How might you envision your idea spreading across geographies or cultures so that it inspires young people around the world to cultivate their creative confidence?

Food is something that every person can relate to. Plus, bento boxes are Japanese inventions so in a way, this is already a cross-cultural idea.

What skills, input or guidance would you like to receive from the OpenIDEO community to help you build out or refine your idea further?

What would be some repercussions of this idea?


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Photo of Francesco Padulo

I like the idea considering food is something you cannot really avoid in your day and this could become an interesting exercise to do before eating.
nice interaction.

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