We know that there is no better preparation for play and learning than a good meal and snacks. Our vegetarian menu reflects a conscious effort to provide the best food, using healthy, whole, local, seasonal and organic foods whenever possible. Our fruits and veggies are purchased locally as much as possible; our eggs are local and free-range. Snacks and lunch are served family style, with children being exposed to a variety of foods, tastes and textures.
A Tiny Lab believes strongly that offering children healthy, fresh, seasonal and home-made meals and snacks help to lay the foundation for a happy and healthy day. When planning our menus we derive inspiration from locally grown, sustainable produce. Our menus are based on local and sustainable produce whenever possible, whole grains and simple recipes to make fresh and flavourful food. Meals are served family style so that children can engage with food and learn skills to foster independence.
The following principles guide us in our menu planning:
- appropriate portion sizes for each required meal set by the Standards for Food and Nutrition in Regulated Child Care Settings
- Consideration of food allergies and nutrition requirements of a vegetarian diet
- Low sodium and low sugar
- Recipes, experiences, and thoughts from “The Languages of Food”, by Reggio Children, “The Art of Simple Food” and “Edible Schoolyard” by Alice Waters and “The Family Dinner” by Laurie David
Children participate in setting the tables for lunch each day and have opportunities to practice serving themselves. Children are always encouraged to try at least one bite of everything offered but are never forced to finish all food served to them. Two light snacks (morning and afternoon) and lunch are provided at A Tiny Lab.