Allocate at least 1 hour in the field to support this field experience.
Understanding the nutritional needs of very young children is important for teachers. This knowledge allows teachers to support children in developing healthy and educated eating habits. Depending on the setting, some teachers or childcare workers may also be responsible for meal planning.
Observation and Interview
At your field experience childcare center, observe the preparation of meals for young children birth to age 3. Interview a center employee or director regarding the factors that influence the planning of meals for children at various ages and stages.
Include the following in your interview:
- What are the laws, regulations, and guidelines in your state regarding meal preparation?
- How do allergies, food aversions and needs inform the planning of meals?
- What challenges arise in meeting the regulations and eating needs?
- How does the childcare center seek information regarding students’ food allergies/needs and train staff on them?
- How does the childcare center address food brought from home?
In 250-500 words, summarize and reflect upon the information from the interview with the childcare center employee or director. Discuss how meal planning and delivery can support the planned vision and culture of a childcare center. Include how you plan to apply what you learned to your future professional practice.