About a month ago I wrote about the Trash Free Fridays initiative at Prep Senior. Since then I've been approached by a number of teachers and reminded that other classes are doing it too. The Prep Reception and Prep Junior classes have been doing something along these lines for years with parents asked to consider the snacks they send along with their children. Students who have gone through our program for the past three years (when the Prep Seniors started the initiative) have experienced it as well. So as of November 15th we're piloting a Trash Free Fridays across Melawati and seeing how it goes.
This has farther reaching effects than one might suspect, however, as there is a need for total community buy-in to ensure success. Students and teachers, of course, are on the front line, but this also affects operations (most notably the cafeteria) and home prepared lunches as well. which is where parents come in.
Here's a quick guide for parents of Melawati children:
- Try to pack lunches that are healthy and natural
- Try to purchase food that is in its natural state rather than something in a package (the idea is not to take it out of its package and transfer it to a tupperware container, but to avoid packaging altogether)
- Spend time with your son/daughter in making the food. Apart from the positive interaction it provides it's also a great opportunity to talk about nutrition and positive eating choices!
Certainly there is a new level of thinking that needs to take place regarding purchasing and preparation, particularly for those of us whose shopping bags are stuffed with single service packages. But research clearly indicates that sustainable and healthy choices are nothing but beneficial for the development of our children. Proper nutrition, healthy discussions and hands-on interaction with healthy food are all part of far-reaching nutrition education and that correlates to positive nutritional choices as children grow. If one adds the environmental benefits of less waste-to-landfill it's hard not to call it a win-win situation.
We hope you'll join us in celebrating this through your participation, choices and conversations with your children and family. After all, we're all in this together!