Send-Home Activity (English)
Shape SoupECT LOGO
Cooking helps children learn about measuring, nutrition, and following step-by-step instructions. Warming up with this dish at home can teach about shapes too!

What You Need:

  • medium saucepan
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cups vegetables, such as potatoes, carrots, and green beans
  • 3 cups canned chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • salt and pepper to taste

What You Do Together:

  1. Talk about what kinds of vegetables you want to put in your soup and what shapes you want to cut them into. Some ideas are triangle carrots, square potatoes, star-shaped zucchini, rectangle beans, U-shaped celery. Shelled peas are natural circles!

  2. Help your child cut the softer vegetables, such as beans and celery, with a plastic knife. You can cut the rest with an adult knife.

  3. Make the soup, allowing your child to help with the steps that are safe and appropriate:
    • Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook the onion until soft, about five minutes.
    • Add the vegetables, stock, oregano, and thyme. Bring to a boil.
    • Lower the heat and simmer about 20 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Season with salt and pepper.

  4. Let cool for a few minutes, and enjoy. Talk together about the vegetable shapes as you eat them!

More Ways to Learn

Shape Sandwiches: With a bowl of soup, these make a complete meal! Together, make your child's favorite sandwich. Then help him use a cookie cutter, plastic knife, or drinking glass turned upside down to cut the bread into round, square, or other shapes. Three circles placed next to one another make a winter snowman!

Kid Cookbook: After you've made the soup together, work with your child to write and illustrate the steps of the recipe on a sheet of paper. Do the same thing when you make dishes together in the future, and then bind the pages together into a family cookbook!

up arrowTop of page

Take a look at the Spanish version of this activity.