Food & Menu
Here at Tiptoes we believe that it’s important to establish healthy eating habits early on to give your children the best start in life. We aim to make this possible by giving the children in our nursery home cooked, nutritional food bursting with fresh fruit and vegetables necessary for healthy physical and mental development.
After all that hard work in the outdoors we will need to feed those hungry wee tummies! We will serve delicious two course lunches, which will be prepared and made onsite on our premises.
We intend to provide a balanced diet with ample fruits and vegetables alongside tasty hot meals. Of course if there are any specific requirements just ask and we will more than accommodate! We will also serve snacks that the wee ones will help cook sometimes so that we can experiment with their taste buds.
Our aim is to provide a balanced, nutritious and varied menu, which is appealing and appetising to all of the children in our care. Our journey of creating the current menu has been a long one and we change it ever so often depending on children's needs, likes, nutritional guidelines set by Setting the Table document and an overall balance. We do have frozen treats on offer such as 'chicken nuggets/fish fingers' on the menu as that is thoroughly enjoyed by most of the children but our meals are generally largely healthy and nutritional.
Where a child has expressed a dislike for a particular food item on offer, we will offer an alternative. We also have a selection of fruit available throughout the day which the children are more than welcome to help themselves to when hungry.
Following standards and guidelines from “Setting the table”, the children will be provided with a variety of foods from each of the major food groups. Children will also be involved in the cooking, baking and preparation of some of their snacks, where the children will learn about food hygiene and where some of their foods come from. In the near future we hope to be able to grow most of our fruit and vegetables in our nursery garden.
Our menus are attached to this policy and also displayed in the reception area on the parent’s notice board. We welcome any feedback with regards to the menu.
At Tiptoes we will provide your child with:
A two course hot lunch
A substantial afternoon snack
Fresh fruits are available throughout the day for the children to snack on if they get hungry in between mealtimes
THROUGHOUT THE DAY
Children will have access to water at all times throughout the day. Staff will provide cups and jugs of water which will be kept in the playroom. Children can help themselves if they feel thirsty through the day. All our food is cooked with no salt and very low sugar content and all our dairy products will be full fat. Sweets and candy are not permitted in the nursery but will be given at parties and on special occasions. All allergies and dietary requirements will be catered for. These requirements will be discussed in detail at your child’s settling in sessions and appropriate information will be recorded and put in place.
Meal and snacks times in the nursery should be an enjoyable and social experience for the children. All children will eat together at tables and chairs, (small babies will eat in highchairs), and staff will encourage good table manners and give praise for this. They will use snack and meal times to encourage the children to become independent and make their own choices. Staff will always sit with the children and can also enjoy the snacks that the nursery provides.
Staff will encourage children as much as possible to try new foods but we fully understand that some children will not like certain foods. If your child does not like foods on our menu they will be given a sandwich as an alternative. Extra portions of the main meal will be provided if children are still hungry. Puddings will not be withheld for not eating main meals. Snack and meal times will always be supervised to minimise the risk of choking. Foods which may be more of a risk for choking will be cut into smaller pieces or skin will be removed.
As part of the curriculum children will learn about foods from different parts of the world, they will learn about where our foods come from and also practice food hygiene procedures when cooking and baking.
As our menu is cooked with no salt and very little sugar content, children under the age of 1 will be given the same foods as on the menu. We will puree, blend or mash the foods to suit their stage of weaning and will only be given cool boiled water for drinking. There may be some main meals on the menu that cannot be adjusted to suit stages of weaning, so babies will be given an alternative freshly cooked meal.
We welcome breastfeeding mothers into the nursery if you still wish to breastfeed your child while in our care. A comfortable private area can be provided for this to happen. Expressed breast milk can be given to babies and staff will store this accordingly.
At Tiptoes we aim to have a large proportion of our staff trained in food hygiene. In-house training is given on a regular basis to provide staff with sufficient knowledge to carry out snack and meal preparation and cooking.