Children are provided with a piece of fruit and either water or milk, whilst taking account of individual ethical or medical requirements. We do a ‘rolling snack’ which means that four children at a time sit at our snack table with an adult and enjoy preparing their food by using real knives and wooden chopping boards to cut up their choice of fruit. We encourage them to talk and learn about healthy eating, food hygiene, and safety when using tools and knives. At Little Owls we make snacks and meals a social time at which children and adults eat together, which also encourages learning from peers and adults.
We request that each child brings their own water bottle (with their name on) and we encourage them to drink their water on a regular basis. Water is always accessible to the children.
Little Owls is a nut free zone so we request that no child brings any foods containing nuts.
Children are encouraged to join in with cooking activities and discuss healthy eating and food hygiene. Each week we make bread, doing this on different days throughout the term so that all children have an opportunity to join in if they wish. They are also offered the opportunity to help grow fruit and vegetables in our garden which we then use in our cooking, such as potatoes in our Harvest soup.
Your child will need to bring a packed lunch, stored in a named lunch box or bag. There is a big box by the gate for these to go in and then we store them in our kitchen fridge. Public Health England estimates that a quarter of children between the ages of 2-10 years old are overweight or obese. We hope that our children at Little Owls are able to fulfil their potential physically and cognitively, and so we encourage the children to eat healthily. This does not mean we believe children should not eat sweet foods; it is important for children to understand what are everyday foods and what are now and again foods. We feel we should leave giving sweet treats to you as often parents need this! We have a statutory responsibility to promote healthy eating at Little Owls so we ask that you send a healthy packed lunch. We would really appreciate you not including any items that are too high in salt or sugar e.g. chocolate or crisps. A ‘main’ part to the lunch (such as a sandwich, a pasta salad or pitta and homous) and a piece of fruit is a good amount of food for our Little Owls. During lunch, adults and children eat together and we use this time to talk a lot about healthy eating, different types of food, and why they are important. It also means children are having healthy eating modelled by adults and their peers. We celebrate when children try new foods and emphasise how our tastes are always changing so it is important to keep trying foods. We use the phrase ‘I’m not sure yet’ rather than ‘’I don’t like it’ to support this.
For more information, advice and support please speak to one of us at Little Owls. Also www.nhs.uk/change4life is a useful website.