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H & S madness?


FionaWood
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Does your FS keep dried food items that may be out of date for malleable play or creative play?

We have recently been told that any food item that is out of date must be disposed of. This includes out of date food colouring must not be dripped into the water tray water, out of date pasta tubes cannot be used for threading and out of date rice must not be put in the tuff spot with the mark making tools.

It has been difficult to find any solid evidence to argue this point. Does anyone have any?

Thanks.

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I haven't heard that and I would tend to use our standard reponse if I was told that! Prove it!

 

I'm always a bit uncomfortable using food to play with so I would always use out of date if it was available.

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I would happily use out of date dried food ( flour, pasta etc) for dough, art etc.................and i'd remind folk that labels on dried stuff says 'best before' NOT 'USE BY'.....which is the label for fresh, perishable stuff. Some folk use H/S as a cosh to bash everyone with and it's ridiculous. I wonder how the heck I reached the age I have without keeling over dead.............we didn't HAVE labels on food, we used common sense. If it was mouldy, it probably wasn't good to eat............if it was smelly and wasn't meant to be, well then it probably wasn't good to eat either ( but you might have tried it anyway :) )...................but dried food?? Could be in the back of the cupboard for years before we used it................it does make me cross. People hungry all over the worldand we get uptight over some out of date dried beans!

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Nothing to do with anything really..........but is it a good time to disclose that we are working our way (slowly) through a jar of mint sauce (at home - kept in fridge door) - date on top of jar says 'best before Oct 2009 :ph34r: :lol: :rolleyes:

 

Anyway back to the real subject - as narnia has said - I happily use 'out of date' foodstuffs at pre-school :1b (for art and craft - not to feed children :o )

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Talking of dried rice- for those of you who have it out to play with, do you supervise it? Reason for asking is, we the staff didn't think it was kind of dangerous untill during our feedback from Ofsted that this could be so. We had it out in the tuff spot during their visit and 2 of the children had taken some into the home corner role play and were pretending it was porridge. Now of all the times we have had it out no one has put it in their mouth, but on this occasion they did. It wasn't in long as they spat it out and a staff member had noticed and went over to them, but Ofsted had seen it. Their comment was "Had we seen the case of child choking on a jelly cube in the news, did we know that rice can swell up when liquid is added"? Well i must admit I hadn't ever thought of it like that to be honest? Were they saying we shouldn't use it then, or just to supervise it more? They really didn't say. Not seen anything written down about it either.

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I nearly gave our Senco lady (who comes into advice us every now and then) a cup of coffee that was a year out of date!!!! :ph34r: :lol: :huh: :unsure: .Thankfully she did laugh ! No one in our setting drinks coffee so we had not noticed !

I did promise her that i would buy a new one before she returns ::1a .

We use dried food alot in our setting and we have used fresh food in the past in home corner ::1a to practice cutting etc (not with sharp Knives though!!!!)

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Talking of dried rice- for those of you who have it out to play with, do you supervise it? Reason for asking is, we the staff didn't think it was kind of dangerous untill during our feedback from Ofsted that this could be so. We had it out in the tuff spot during their visit and 2 of the children had taken some into the home corner role play and were pretending it was porridge. Now of all the times we have had it out no one has put it in their mouth, but on this occasion they did. It wasn't in long as they spat it out and a staff member had noticed and went over to them, but Ofsted had seen it. Their comment was "Had we seen the case of child choking on a jelly cube in the news, did we know that rice can swell up when liquid is added"? Well i must admit I hadn't ever thought of it like that to be honest? Were they saying we shouldn't use it then, or just to supervise it more? They really didn't say. Not seen anything written down about it either.

I hate dried rice with a real vengeance - but not for your about reason, just the fact it's worse than sand for slipping on when it gets all over the floor!

 

Not sure about the above comment - yes it swells when mixed with liquids, but surely that's not in the throat/gullet? wouldn't the liquids just wash it into the stomach ? I guess if you did a lot of dried rice you would get a swollen stomach which could cause problems, and with small children I suppose this could be a risk factor?

 

The jelly cube was different as it was solid but really needs hot water to melt it. We no longer use raw jelly for play, but when we did we always coated it with sand to stop them eating it :lol:

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Talking of dried rice- for those of you who have it out to play with, do you supervise it? Reason for asking is, we the staff didn't think it was kind of dangerous untill during our feedback from Ofsted that this could be so. We had it out in the tuff spot during their visit and 2 of the children had taken some into the home corner role play and were pretending it was porridge. Now of all the times we have had it out no one has put it in their mouth, but on this occasion they did. It wasn't in long as they spat it out and a staff member had noticed and went over to them, but Ofsted had seen it. Their comment was "Had we seen the case of child choking on a jelly cube in the news, did we know that rice can swell up when liquid is added"? Well i must admit I hadn't ever thought of it like that to be honest? Were they saying we shouldn't use it then, or just to supervise it more? They really didn't say. Not seen anything written down about it either.

Really I despair.......going to eat chocolate now ,,,,,,I give up :(:( :angry:

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This list is from New Zealand but looks pretty sensible and comprehensive. It only mentions rice when cooked because it can be squashed into a lump. Clearly you can't do that with uncooked rice.

 

http://www.health.govt.nz/your-health/healthy-living/food-and-physical-activity/healthy-eating/food-related-choking-young-children/foods-pose-higher-choking-risk-children-under-five-years

 

I think that Ofsted inspector was grasping at straws and needs some retraining around risk management.

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Ofsted do not have the right to tell you how to teach. Any food (or anything else for that matter) could be a choking hazard. We are all paediatric first aid trained. This list posted above suggests peas or unpopped popcorn are a risk ....really?????? it would be highly unlikely for these to be an issue as your throat is much bigger than that. Tomatoes and grapes pose a more complex risk but I still would feed them ...just manage the risk.

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This list posted above suggests peas or unpopped popcorn are a risk ....really?????? it would be highly unlikely for these to be an issue as your throat is much bigger than that.

 

 

I can only imagine that applying to babies. Their airways are around the size of a drinking straw (according to my last paediatric first aid course leader) so a pea would be plenty big enough to choke them.

 

I wouldn't expect them to be dangerous to pre-schoolers but I may be wrong.

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Ofsted do not have the right to tell you how to teach. Any food (or anything else for that matter) could be a choking hazard. We are all paediatric first aid trained. This list posted above suggests peas or unpopped popcorn are a risk ....really?????? it would be highly unlikely for these to be an issue as your throat is much bigger than that. Tomatoes and grapes pose a more complex risk but I still would feed them ...just manage the risk.

Ofsted will only inspect the statutory framework - they are not to advise or suggest any preferred methods. If the inspector raised it with you it would have been a question not about the rice per se but more about how robust your risk assessment systems are.

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