Snacks and Nutrition
All classes (except our Wobblers and Pre-Preschool), have a parent-prepared snack. Each family will be asked to provide a nutritious snack two or three times per year. Cups and napkins are available at toddler group. If your child has food allergies, it is your responsibility to alert your Class Coordinator, instructor, and other parents in the class. All food allergies should be posted on the bulletin board in the snack room and should be listed on the medical release form. Depending on the severity of the food allergy, it may be best for you to provide your child’s own snack. Arrangements may be made with your Class Coordinator to skip your “turn” in the rotation if providing your own snack is required. Parents on our Board of Directors with food allergies should alert the Board president and other members. This will help in food preparation for our monthly Board meetings.
Woodinville Toddler Group is a peanut-product and nut-free environment and kindly discourages all other nut products. Peanut products should not be used in any snack, including foods prepared for potluck celebrations and evening parent events.
Snacks should be simple, nutritious, and satisfying. Some healthy snack suggestions are:
- cheese and crackers
- peeled apple wedges, bananas, melons
- satsumas (fun to peel)
- string cheese
- rice cakes
- whole grain cereals
- cooked pasta
Young children are at risk of choking on foods. The risk decreases after age six, although any food may cause choking; regardless of age. Beverly Pressey, MS, RD, author of Simple & Savvy, lists the following foods as possible choking foods for toddlers:
- frankfurters and meat (cut lengthwise and into smaller pieces or shredded)
- crisp fruits (peel and slice thin or steam)
- lettuce and spinach (cut into small pieces and steam)
- nuts and seeds – avoid, do not serve at WTG
- peanut butter- avoid, do not serve at WTG
- whole grapes, cherries with pits (cut into quarters, remove seeds and pits)
- hard candy, chewing gum- avoid, do not serve at WTG
- raw carrots, celery, green beans, peas (cut in small pieces and steam or simmer)
- popcorn or tortilla chips- avoid, do not serve at WTG
- beans, noodles, cookies, teething biscuits- (cook well, soft cookies only)
- processed cheese- avoid, do not serve at WTG
- fruit snacks- avoid, do not serve at WTG
Foods that are small and round, of thick consistency, sticky, slippery, or hard to chew, should be avoided. Children must always be seated and supervised while eating. Please do not serve any foods containing raw honey.
Snack Preparation and Clean-up
Upon arriving to class:
- Wash hands before beginning snack preparation.
- Prepare three snack trays. Supplies are located in the right-hand drawer by the sink.
- Each tray should contain 6 cups, 6 napkins, 1 (¾ -full) pitcher of water, and one washcloth and the snack.
- Please bring your own reusable serving utensils and containers whenever possible to serve snack in. Otherwise, cardboard containers, paper plates and plastic spoons are available to the right of the sink.
- Children eat snack from napkins, unless especially juicy or messy.
- Cover each tray with a paper towel. Carry trays into NUCC’s kitchen and place on the cooking island; children are never allowed in this room.
Following snack and before attending circle:
- Wash each tray and each pitcher with warm soapy water.
- Dry items and put away in snack drawer.
- Put soiled washcloths in the dirty laundry container located under the paint easel.
- Wash the sink area counter.
- Empty the sink strainer into the garbage, assure it is clean of food and debris.
- Re-wash the three tables used for snack. Spray bottles with solutions are located in the snack drawer.
- Use soap solution to spray tables, and wipe dry with paper towels.
- Follow with the bleach solution and wipe dry with paper towels.
- Return soap and bleach solutions to the snack drawer next to the sink.
- Take home leftover snack, containers and utensils.
- Join the group for circle time!
General Snack Guidelines
Children must sit on their bottoms with their chair pushed in at the tables; food must be consumed at the tables only. This is consistent with our risk management guidelines. Please do not allow your child to walk around with food in their mouth or to take food with them to circle. Adults may kneel down by the tables or sit in extra chairs next to their child. Please encourage children to assist with wiping up spills with the washcloth provided and with clearing their place. Waxed cups, napkins, and food scraps can be discarded in the tall, green compostable container.
Children in the 2-3 year old classes should be encouraged to pour their own water. Families in the 1-2 year old classes may want to bring a sippy cup for their child; particularly in early fall. The paper cups are not very durable. Please discourage children from kicking the table while eating; this activity is often contagious! Snack is an appropriate time to give announcements.
Wobblers Parents would follow the above guidelines on cleaning tables, eating at tables, sweep, and cleaning up after snack.
Celebrations at WTG
Birthdays may be celebrated during circle time. Please notify your instructor and Class Coordinator of your child’s birthday prior to circle. Please do not bring cupcakes or sweet treats for birthdays. Potlucks are encouraged several times throughout the school year. We have potlucks during the last class before holiday break in December and the all-school picnic in June. These potlucks offer an opportunity for families to come together in friendship and conversation.