For Parents - Lunches


St Mary's offer canteen lunches on a Thursday each week with a set menu available and specials advertised in the Newsletter each week. Lunch orders need to be placed by Tuesday lunchtime with lunch order bags available from the front office or in each classroom's note basket.

If you are available to help in the canteen or with washing tea towels, we would love to have you, please speak to Chelsey in the front office.

Better Learning Through the Lunchbox
(From ‘Education Today’ magazine)

The food children consume at school has had a lot of media attention in the last few years. By making the following small changes in school lunchboxes learning can be greatly improved.

Sandwiches – If the sandwich is made from white sliced bread, brainpower potential immediately drops. Lower in all the essential nutrients, it is also lower in B vitamins – essential for brain development. Choosing good quality wholegrain bread for sandwiches can make a difference to brain food intake. By filling the sandwich with cheese, salad, tuna, fresh chicken or egg, rather than processed meats and spreads, the child has far greater potential for learning. Essential oils found in fish for example are widely known to feed the intellect.

Drinks – Water is the only drink that children need at school. The correlation between hydration and learning has been shown to be evident many times. Dehydration can lead to tiredness, irritability and headaches. An adequate supply of water throughout the day makes learning easier. Fruit juice, even the ones with no added sugar, are still high in sugars, dampening appetite and increasing blood sugar levels. Soft drinks are of course not only very high in sugar but can also contain caffeine – not ideal to enhance learning.

Snacks – Simple home made snacks are the health makers. Whole grain muffins, biscuits or slices, home made popcorn, dried fruit and nuts, or yoghurt as a snack are far better for kids than chocolate bars, chips and manufactured snacks, which send blood sugar levels soaring from their sugar content and have children climbing the walls with their food additive content. Again, not the best for learning.

Fruits and Vegetables – Vital components of a healthy lunchbox! A couple of pieces of fruit and a vegetable or two increases the health stakes enormously. They help keep blood sugar levels even and provide essential vitamins and minerals to enhance learning.

What does St Mary’s do to encourage healthy lunchboxes?

  • Become a Crunch and Sip School – St Mary’s has had this in place since 2006.

  • Students are encouraged to bring their water bottle and some brain food to munch on in class
    (eg carrot/celery sticks, sultanas, crackers, strawberries etc)

  • Education and student’s involvement – on the importance of good food, the food groups and the importance of good food in lunchboxes:

  • Promote Fruit & Veg week, Healthy Bones week etc

  • Making healthy sandwiches, cooking yummy quiches

  • Organising healthy morning teas

  • Looking at how we can provide a variety of healthy lunches from our Thursday canteen

  • Inform Parents – Newsletter tips and articles for parents on healthy lunchbox idea