The Tiffin Tin

What\’s in your lunchbox?

The Little Red Breakfast Wagon: Flax Cereal, Fruit

with 8 comments

The Universal School breakfast used to be a dreary affair at Tiniest Tiffin’s school. The children who qualified for a free breakfast would go to the cafeteria before the bell rang and eat together before trooping out to join their classmates. The line between the haves and have nots was clear. It wasn’t friendly, or yummy, or communal. It was “feeding.”

The schools have been working on doing better. For one thing, breakfast is delivered in these adorable red wagons.  And this year everyone sits down together, during the first twenty minutes of the day. If you eat breakfast at home, you hang out and wait for your friends to finish. If you, like me, don’t always have time to fix breakfast at home, your child can always have it at school.  At first, it was a bit awkward, and some children would eat breakfast twice.  But by  now the children are used to the drill, and they eat when they’re hungry for the most part.  

The best thing is that my son’s teacher — a brilliant, energetic, wonderful woman — has turned what could be seen as a lost 20 minutes of instructional time into a chance to touch base with the parents about how things are going. And she also saves some part of the breakfast (today it was the fruit) and gives it to all the children at snack time. There’s very little waste, as far as I could see. And the food is simple and almost always good. This morning, it was cereal, milk and fruit. The cereal, an organic flax seed brand I hadn’t seen before, was child-friendly enough that every child I saw eating breakfast was eating this cereal.

Written by bloglily

November 14, 2006 at 10:12 am

8 Responses

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  1. Or if your children were like mine, they’d eat at home and school both. 🙂

    Having free breakfast and lunch was a godsend when the kids were little. It really helped with finances, and there didn’t appear to be that much of a stigma in getting free lunch.

    But I like the idea of *everyone* taking time out for breakfast. More schools should do that.

    Sue Crocker

    November 14, 2006 at 12:34 pm

  2. Yes, Sue, for a long time the tiny tiffin was eating both breakfasts. But then he stopped — I guess he got used to it. There’s no stigma to free lunches around here either: the children have a swipe card, so you can’t tell how or how much they pay.

    And it’s lovely that they do sit down for those twenty minutes in the morning. I think it helps them settle into the day.

    xo, L


    November 14, 2006 at 5:18 pm

  3. My kids take a second breakfast to school with them, which they eat around 10am. They all sit down around a table, unpack their little breakfasts onto plates, pour themselves a drink and converse. It’s too cute for words.


    November 14, 2006 at 9:30 pm

  4. Oh, I really like that image, the little ones all around a table unpacking their breakfasts. I wonder what German children eat at their 10:00 a.m. snack. I’ll bet it’s yummy.


    November 15, 2006 at 10:18 am

  5. Oooh, very healthy. Lots of cucumber slices, strips of pepper, apple, wholegrain sandwiches, yogurt. We sometimes break loose with a Nutella sandwich, but always on healthy bread.


    November 15, 2006 at 11:04 pm

  6. I just bought two huge jars of Nutella for those breaking loose moments. I just wish wholegrain bread was a bigger hit in our house. Brown rice, now, is considered yummy. But if they see a single seedy thing in the bread,they all freak out. (Sigh)


    November 16, 2006 at 12:50 pm

  7. We pack lunch plus two snacks– and we’re working on the seed thing, too. The nut and seed snacks have to very well wrapped in sweet cookie type coating in order to disappear completely. But hmmm, Nutella– maybe I should buy it again– is Kobe Bryant off the label yet?


    November 17, 2006 at 7:58 pm

  8. I had no idea he was on the label. Good heavens! Two big jars of Nutella at Costco (the one in San Francisco) are about $10, if I remember right.

    Every weekend I try to think of what sort of whole grain bread I might be able to introduce into their lunchboxes. So far, I’ve had fair-ish results.


    November 17, 2006 at 8:05 pm

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