Word List for first word users

apple, banana, biscuit, bread, butter, cake, carrot, cheese, chicken, chips, coffee, corn, drink, egg, fish, icecream, grapes, orange, juice, milk, pasta, sandwich, sauce, soup, strawberry, toast, yoghurt, water.


 Make sure you have a good set of plastic/ wooden food.  Accessories include tea set, shopping bag and money.  


1.  Shopping

Put out your food items for sale and buy/ sell them.  Use a cash register and shopping bag.  Why not use recycled egg cartons, cereal boxes etc as your food too?

2.  Fruit salad

make it for real or in pretend play!

3.  Feed a puppet / teddy 

Will the puppet like the food or spit it out?!

4.  Cafe 

Set up a cafe and put in your orders. A waitress can serve you your lunch items.

5.  Shopping List – (object and Picture Matching) 

use photos and match up with real/plastic food.

6.  Pictures

A set of fruit and vegetable pictures is a useful resource for making your own fruit salad craft or pizza.


This is our recommended list for toddlers and preschoolers learning about fruits and vegetables.   Some of these books have simple pictures to name, whilst others have a story like ‘Handa’s Surprise’ for preschoolers already starting to use longer phrases

Handa’s Surprise.  

A girl goes walking with a basket of fruit on her head.  Little does she know that as she walks the animals have been stealing them!  This is a visually appealing book with a nice steady rhythm and sequence.   Great for preschoolers linking ideas.

Words to Try – lemon, pineapple, mango, pear, apple.

The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Everyone knows this story!  A great way to rehearse all the fruit and vegetables throughout the caterpillar’s journey.  Why not play this out with some real fruit and a puppet?

Words to Try – apple, orange, cherry, strawberry.

Oliver’s Fruit Salad. You can learn different fruit names as Oliver prepares a fruit salad at home for his family.  Why not make one at home after reading the book?Words to Try – pineapple, apple, pear, strawberry.

Eating the Alphabet. A fruit and vegetable dictionary from A to Z!  Great way to learn new words.

The Ugly Vegetables.   A story about planting vegetables in the back garden.  Although they are not as pretty as flowers, they turn out to be delicious!  This is a nice one to followup outside in your own garden.

I will not ever never eat a tomato. From the Charlie and Lola series.  Lots of fruits and vegetables (and other foods) in this book which have been magically turned into other things.  Carrots are orange twiglets and mashed potato is cloud fluff.  This is a more advanced book for a preschooler but great for learning describing words.

Words to Try – tomato, carrot, potato

The Vegetable Patch. This is from the Farmer Tim series.  A donkey discovers the farmer’s vege patch and decides to help himself.

Farmer’s Market Day. This is a sweet book about a little girl visiting the fruit and vegetable stall at her local farmer’s market.  She unwittingly topples over things as she walks through picking up some fruit.  Lots of describing words for older preschoolers to talk about.  A nice rhyming text goes throughout the book which you can help your child to listen to.  It’s also a great news experience to practice at retell.