When planning your snack, we would love it if you could bring three food items: a fruit, or vegetable, a carbohydrate and a protein. For example, a super snack could be: grapes, goldfish, and cheese sticks. We ask for three items in order to expose the students to a variety of food. Also, to allow them a choice, and to make sure that usually one of the items will be something they will eat. With the three items you choose to send, please send in more than you think is needed, and then we will send home the extras with you. A good rule to go by, is to send in enough for at least two students beyond the number of students in the class. It also makes things easier for snack set-up, if you can try to limit the individualized wrapped items to one per snack. For example, it is much easier for us to work with a large box of goldfish crackers, than the pre-packaged individual serving size ones.
Please do your best to prepare the snack as much as possible at home. If you are choosing to provide whole fruit, (good choice), please wash the fruit before bringing it to school. If you can take the grapes off the stems, that makes it that much easier for us to serve the snack to the students. Please keep in mind that grapes need to be cut for the Panda Bear class, but not the older classes. Also, the older classes prefer apples that are whole, and the Panda Bear class prefers them cut. When providing bananas, the whole ones are easier to manage than the mini ones, even though the mini ones look so cute. If possible, please avoid fruit salad. If you choose a spread, such as, cream cheese, or peanut butter, we would love it if you could spread it on the bagels or crackers before coming to preschool.
The following are some ideas for each category:
Fruits/Vegetables: Blueberries, Raspberries, Strawberries-destemmed, Orange sections, Melon pieces, pineapple, applesauce cups, Craisins, Carrots, (they love ranch dip in cupcake wrappers), celery, (maybe with peanut butter), cucumber slices, pepper slices, cherry tomatoes, etc.
Carbs: Whole-grain crackers, Goldfish crackers, Saltines, Graham crackers, Cereal, (Cheerio’s & Mini-wheats, or Oat squares seem to be favorites), Bagels, (with or without cream cheese), muffins, granola bars, breadsticks, multi-grain bars, etc.
Protein: Various cheeses: cubed, slices, sticks, etc., Salami roll-ups-(this is salami with cream cheese), Pepperoni, ( I still can’t get over how much they like pepperoni), lean meat slices, peeled hard-boiled eggs, yogurt-(all the same flavor), Peanut butter spread on apples, bread, crackers, etc.
For our snack time, we provide water for all the students, so no need to provide a beverage with the snack.
Finally, our What Not To Bring list:
Go-gurt, fruit cups, unpeeled oranges, or clementines, (We love peeled!), large cupcakes piled high with red, blue, or other stain-causing color icing, unpeeled hard-boiled eggs, (peeled are fine), fruit salad, pickles, and aerosol cheese. We will keep you updated on our “least favorite things” snack list throughout the school year.