Lunchbox Lessons

With the kids back at school for another year, we might be fooled into thinking the pressure is off.  No more holidays filled with cries of ‘I’m bored’ or ‘I’m hungry’ – that’s the school’s problem now!

But the return to school means the return of the school lunchbox. A little box that haunts us each morning as we realise we don’t have any fresh bread, have run out of sweet biscuits and forgot to buy something for fruit snack.

We all know that providing a nutritious lunchbox for our sons is important, but allergies, picky eaters and judgement from other parents (or worse, your child’s friends) can cause many of us to throw up our hands and declare it a ‘lunch order’ day… again!

A good idea at the start of each term is to have a chat with your child about their lunchbox.  What would they like to have in there?  What have their friends had that they wish they could have? It’s a great way to get new ideas and giving your child a sense of ownership can make the process a little more enjoyable.

If possible, get your child involved in preparing and packing their own lunchboxes like cutting fruit and choosing their snacks. You can even extend it to the supermarket where they can be involved in selecting their fruit for the week or buying a small treat.

Purchasing what is in season (in Australia it’s strawberries and bananas in summer and mandarins in winter) can also help with the decision making – or switch out fruit for some chopped carrots with dip. In season produce has the added benefit of being more economical – just make sure you follow any allergy advice from your school.

Another helpful tip is to use your school network and find out what works for other parents.  You’re not the only one wondering what to put in each day.  Ask around those organised parents you know or search for some inspiration online (a fun one to do with your children).

Understanding Boys has put together a great resource on nutrition for learning and wellbeing if you’d like to read more and the Victorian Government has a fact sheet specifically about healthy eating and school lunches


Brought to you by Brighton Grammar School

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