A topic of conversation that comes up all the time in school staff rooms is children that squirm - fidget - jiggle - fiddle - twist and turn! Those who cannot sit still: they jump, spin, flop around on the classroom floor, lay down or slump over a table. Children like this aren’t usually misbehaving, it’s their… Continue reading Why children need to squirm to learn
How food is marketed has a powerful influence over consumer behaviour and purchases. Have you ever considered that food marketing targeted at children is to groom them towards lifelong brand loyalty? Children are particularly vulnerable to food advertising due to their stage of cognitive development. Young children think logically in concrete terms; this means thinking… Continue reading How sensitive is a child’s brain to food marketing?
Confession: I'm a teacher, nutritionist and feeding therapist. I refuse to place a bunch of soft drink bottles on a table along with sugar cubes and ask children to guess how much sugar is in each drink. Nor do I use the same concept with chocolate bars, lollies, cereals, condiments and fruit. Why I hear… Continue reading That Sugar Activity
“When you eat junk food, you get fat!” and “Is this food healthy?” When working with children, there’s nothing off limits and thoughts are heard out loud. Children think it and say it. These are the kinds of comments and questions I’ve had from primary students in the last twelve months. This seems to be… Continue reading The Australian Health Curriculum – Is it helping or harming our children?
The human brain is a fascinating organ that we continue to learn more about. The fitness of the brain is also known as cognitive fitness. Cognitive fitness is the “state of optimized ability to reason, remember, learn, plan, and adapt.” Maintaining brain health and fitness relies on a number of factors; optimal nutrition, regular physical… Continue reading Boosting Children’s Brain Fitness
Prepping school lunch boxes can be the bane of one's existence. In Australia there's about 200 teaching days so that means 200 school lunches, and that's only if you have one child! As a teacher I get to see many variations of lunch box contents everyday and I'm well aware of the judgement placed on… Continue reading Who is the gatekeeper of your child’s lunch box?
I have the privilege of working in schools in my capacity as both a teacher and nutritionist. Earlier this year I wrote an article about the over-policing of school lunch boxes that hit a nerve with many. While I am highly critical about ‘Healthy Lunch Box’ policies, I do understand where teachers are coming… Continue reading An Open Letter to my Teacher
Our current society places body size and shape on a very high pedestal. We are all too familiar with the catch-cries that associate lack of exercise and poor dietary habits with obesity and lifestyle related diseases. Body image is used to sell us an ideal of health and we’re bombarded with frequent messages that we… Continue reading Saving Our Children from Diet Culture
As the school year begins here in Australia so does the lunch box routine. Over the last few years school lunch boxes have become a battleground as a means to fight obesity and also to identify what’s considered healthy and unhealthy. You’ll read in mainstream media that a number of schools around Australia are implementing… Continue reading Mind Your Own Lunch Box
Holidays can be a tricky time for parents when it comes to feeding children. Routines and environments change so this may require new feeding decisions to be made. Even though eating is a habitual behaviour, holidays can change the food choices made. Sometimes there’s a lapse in routine and tiredness sets in, resulting in food… Continue reading 7 Tips for Holiday Eating – Keeping Healthy with Kids