Wooded Acres Child Care

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Nutritious Snack Ideas


FAQ about snacks and meals served at Wooded Acres:

Are there microwaves in the classrooms?

Classrooms do not utilize microwaves.  The lunch and snack times in these groups are 'family syle'.  This means we all sit together, including the caregivers.  It would be difficult to heat each meals up in the microwave, serve them in a timely fashion so that they are still warm and maintain a family atmosphere.  Most groups have 6-10 children sitting together at a table.  (You can see how this would be a difficult task. :))

A thermos can always be used to send in a hot meal.  Please be advised that if you are unable or unwilling to follow the manufacturers directions on how to keep the contents hot inside the thermos, then you should not use one.  Your child may become ill, have stomach cramps, diahhrea and can have serious complications. Baby Center  Please make sure you read up on how to keep the temp in the thermos at a safe level so bacteria doesn't grow.  Temperatures inside the thermos must be maintained at a level of at least 140 degrees.  
Homemade School Lunches 
How to Keep School Lunches Warm

Are the tables sanitized prior to use?

Yes.  Each table is sprayed before and after use with a soap and water solution and then a bleach and water solution. The tops, sides and  bottoms (where those little fingers go) are wiped with a clean cloth each time. Spray solutions are made fresh each day.  Children use either a napkin or a clean, sanitized place mat under the meals.

Are paper cups used?

Paper cups are sometimes used.  Usually, small re-usable plastic cups are used.  These are cleaned daily following state guidelines. Parents are welcome to send in single-serve sippy cups, empasis on the single-serve.  Sippy cups will be used only one time, one meal or snack, then contents discarded and returned to childs cubby or lunch bag.   Once used, the cup is 'contaminated' and bacteria may grow.  Please consider this when filling those cups in the morning.  You might want to fill only the amount you think your child will drink in one serving.  You can send in a separate cup of milk, juice, etc with lid that we can pour from if you wish. All food and beverages will be sent home daily. This is a state regulation.  We are not allowed to keep items in the fridge to be used the next day.

Why do we need to label food and food containers with our child's name?

We want to make sure your child gets his or her food.  Therefore, even if you have a lunch box labeled with your child's name, we would like the individual bags and containers labeled as well.  This assures that if your child takes the item from the lunch box or bag, that your child will get that food and that the container will be returned home to you (even if it goes through our washing cycle).  We sometimes hear "He took my _____ (yogurt, juice box, etc)"  Labeled containers and food help us immensely.  We realize this is a time-consuming and tedious task to do at home.  We appreciate that.  It is ok if you choose not to do this but please be understanding if there is a food or container mix-up. 


Great snack and meal ideas to send to school:

Remember:  It is ok (and very common!) if your child eats the same thing for lunch every day!  If it is healthy and he or she likes it, then keep doing it. 

Remember:  Please introduce new foods at home first.  Watch for allergic reactions. https://keepkidshealthy.com/ 

Yogurt:  Try to send in yogurt that is on the thicker side.  This allows the children a feeling of success when he/she is able to get the spoon to the mouth without it dripping all over the place!

Mom and Daughter Trying New Foods Together

Chicken pieces:  Left over chicken from the night before or cooked chicken sliced up into bite sized pieces is always a big hit.  It can be served cold and 'ready to eat'.  We encourage that the fried outer coating of chicken or chicken nuggets be cut off before sending in.  Kids tend to eat this part and only this part.  We feel that if they arn't exposed to the fried foods at an early age then they will go for the protein rich chicken instead.

Tuna sandwich, lettuce and tomatoes

Sliced turkey, lean roast beef,

Send a salad in a small plastic container. Keep the dressing on the side in a separate smaller container.

Cheese sticks go well with sandwiches and are a good source of calcium.

Whole grain snack crackers add a nice crunch and lots of healthy fiber.

Vegetarian Suggestions:

Rice dishes (vegetable rice, red beans rice, vegetable and lentil soups with rice, vegetarian chili)
Indian wheat bread (roti or paratha)
Pastas and noodles with vegetable and tofu
Sandwich - whole wheat bread with a vegetable curry filling 
Cut whole wheat tortilla into wedges and stuff with some vegetarian filling
Steamed vegetables, fruit, yogurt, cheese 

These are great ideas for snacks at home:

Apple Sandwich: Slice an apple, spread peanutbutter onto slices, and make a sandwich or add a slice of cheese between the slices.

Yogurt sundae Children can make their own.  supply bowls, plain yogurt, cut up fruit, and toppings of wheat germ and dry cereal.

Fruit Kabobs: Skewer cut-up fresh fruit and low-fat cheese cubes, pitted dates, or prunes on long straws or long toothpicks (for older children).  Serve kabobs with a dip made with plani, low-gat yogut sprinled with cinnamon or a few drops of vanilla flavoring, or well-stirred, mixed fruit yogurt.

Fruit juice surprises: Divide 1 cup of cut-up fruit pieces (apple, banana, orange, strawberries) into 4 glasses.   Add 3 cups ofunsweetened fruit juice and chill.

Veggie kabobs: Skewer cut-up pieces of fresh vegetables (such as cherry tomatoes, zucchini, carrots, cucumbers, green peppers, mushrooms) and low-fat cheese cubes on long straws or long toothpicks (for older children).  Serve with salad dressing or a dip madewith mashed beans, yogurt, or cottage cheese and seasoned with herbs.

Toss a salad: Invite children to a homemade salad bar.  Set out dishes of cu-up veggies for children to create their own salads. 

Celery stuff its- Fill celery with part-skim ricotta cheese mixed with unsweetened crushed pineapple.  Or, fill celery with peanutbutter and add a few raisins (this is called 'Ants on a Log').

Lettuce roll: Spread tuna or chicken salad, peanutbutter, or low-fat ricotta cheese on a letuce leaf and roll it up.