Food and Drink (6.7)

At Reepham Nursery we regard snack and meal times as an important part of the day.
Eating represents a social time for children and adults and helps children to learn about healthy eating.  At snack and meal times, we aim to provide nutritious food, which meets the children’s individual dietary needs. This includes toast, apples and bananas with a choice of milk or water to drink.

We regularly provide opportunities for the children to participate in cooking activities and food tasting activities.

Procedures

We follow these procedures to promote healthy eating in our Nursery.

  • Before a child starts to attend the Nursery, we find out from parents/carers their children’s dietary needs and preferences, including any allergies.  (See the Managing Children with Allergies policy.)
  • We record information about each child’s dietary needs in her/his registration form and parents/carers sign the record to verify that it is correct.
  • We regularly consult with parents to ensure that our records of their children’s dietary needs – including any allergies – are up-to-date.  Parents/carers sign the up-dated record to verify that it is correct.
  • We display current information about individual children’s dietary needs so that all staff, volunteers and students are fully informed about them.
  • We implement systems to ensure that children receive only food and drink that is consistent with their dietary needs and preferences as well as their parents’ wishes.
  • We provide nutritious food for snacks, avoiding large quantities of saturated fat, sugar and salt and artificial additives, preservatives and colourings.
  • We include foods from the diet of each of the children’s cultural backgrounds, in food tasting activities, providing children with the opportunity to try familiar foods and introducing them to new ones.
  • We take care not to provide food containing nuts or nut products and are especially vigilant where we have a child who has a known allergy to nuts.
  • Through discussion with parents/carers and research reading by staff, we obtain information about the dietary rules of the religious groups to which children and their parents/carers belong, and of vegetarians and vegans, and about food allergies. We take account of this information in the provision of food and drinks.
  • We require staff to show sensitivity in providing for children’s diets and allergies.  Staff do not use a child’s diet or allergy as a label for the child or make a child feel singled out because of her/his diet or allergy.
  • We organise lunch and snack times so that they are social occasions in which children and staff participate.
  • We use lunch and snack times to help children to develop independence through making choices, serving food and drink and feeding themselves.
  • We provide children with utensils that are appropriate for their ages and stages of development and that take account of the eating practices in their cultures.
  • We have fresh drinking water which is constantly available for the children.  We inform the children about how to obtain the water and that they can ask for water at any time during the day.
  • We also request the in the summer months children bring a named drinking bottle to nursery, so that we can have water available to them outside.
  • We inform parents/carers that the packed lunch that they provide for their children will be stored in a cool place that is inaccessible to the children. Unrefrigerated food is served to children within 4 hours of preparation at home.
  • We encourage parents/carers to use freezer blocks in packed lunches to keep food cool.
  • In order to protect children with food allergies, we discourage children from sharing and swapping their food with one another.
  • For children who drink milk, we provide semi-skimmed pasteurised milk.
  • We encourage parents/carers to provide sandwiches/wraps and rolls with a healthy filling. We discourage fizzy drinks and sweets in packed lunch boxes.
  • We ensure that a member of staff sits with children to eat their lunch or snack  so that the mealtime is a social occasion.

 

The Policy was adopted at a meeting of:  Reepham Nursery School
Held in:  June 2016
Date to be reviewed:  June 2019
Signed on behalf of the management committee:  Rachael Jones- Chairperson.