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Managing Drinking Water


bubblejack
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I know we are supposed to have drinking water available at all times and would like to provide this. At the moment children can have their snack as and when. In the summer I ask parents to bring a named water bottle but apparantly Ofsted want the children to be able to pour their own at any time.This isnt a problem in the summer months because we are outside for most of the sessions. Do you end up with lots of cups to wash up.? In the past every child had a named cup but I have 70 children now and it wouldn't be easily managed.

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We have used dispossable plastic cups!! The trouble with these is that children will pour water in them and then drink a bit and put it back on the table so it had to be constantly monitored so another child wouldnt start drinking from the same used cup!!

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My children pour their own drinks, but I only have 25 at any session. Have you thought about using a water dispenser, I've seen these used successfully, once the children get over the novelty of turning on the tap :o

 

Peggy

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we have 24 children in a session, as said after the novelty has worn off from cups and jug of water on the side to help yourself too it works well. In fact very few children help themselves, and only the occasional spilage...

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I have reception class of 24- ch have own bottles with name on- they fill their own from filtered tap water- i encourage them to be as independent as possible i am on my own most of the time- if it spills its only water it works really well and they all drink loads of water :o

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We have a water dispenser that we bought from a well known catalogue shop. Children help themselves, we have a collection of cups and a basket/bowl to put the used cups in . We have had no problems at all, children put the cups in the bowl when used and help themselves, it works very well, our children are aged 3 to 5.

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We just have a jug on a table with cups, children return cups to our kitchen hatch, but could just as easliy put cups into a bowl after use.

 

After initial excitement when they start at being able to access drink for themselves it actually seldom gets used, probably about once a week at most.

 

Inge

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I use a flask with a press top. However, I know the emphasis is on "pouring" and therefore I do not fit the bill on this. I got pulled up on my accreditation for this too although I do offer pouring at other activities. Of course water/fluids throughout the session is an important aspect but even this seems to create a whole load of issues - risk assessment and transfer of infection included as well as physical aspects and pse aspects of learning - just sometimes find it so hard to please everyone/everything all the time. And yet another policy that has to be written revised each year

Nikki

Nikki

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We have a jug of water with 4 or 5 cups on which seldom get used. There may be an occasional spillage but it's just water so not too much of a problem. A deep sided tray works well to collect any spillages (3 cms deep). Like the idea of a bowl to put the used cups in. Have wondered about having a one of those water coolers, where did you get yours from?

 

Deb

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We have a jug of water with 4 or 5 cups on which seldom get used.  There may be an occasional spillage but it's just water so not too much of a problem.  A deep sided tray works well to collect any spillages (3 cms deep).  Like the idea of a bowl to put the used cups in.  Have wondered about having a one of those water coolers, where did you get yours from?

 

Deb

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we got ours from Argos, we've had it for a year now, and its been great

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We used a jug and lots of cups which the children put in a bowl when used. They did need a bit of training and once or twice we found children pouring undrunk water back into the jug. We also had a few problems with a lovely little SEN fellow who kept trying to fill them all up with sand, so for a while we had to remove them and then reintroduce them under supervision until he learnt not to do this. It' s a good activity for independence and hand-eye co-ordination, but the child i have mentioned would just keep on pouring regardless of whether the cup was full or not!!! Great fun eh?

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Mostly the same as everyone else. Jug of water on the side with approximately 5 cups (we have upto 26 children per session). Some days it is used lots and we have to get out more cups and others not at all.

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we don't let our children pour their water, should we be doing this?.

 

they do each have their own water bottles that are filled in the morning, placed in an area they can freely access, they are refilled at lunch and again at tea so the water is fresh.

 

we provide pouring activities as in water play etc... its not practical for the children to be filling their own bottles as the sink is not at there level.

 

Dawn

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We are a sessional preschool our children pour their own drinks at cafe/snack time and then a jug of water with a few cups is put on the side for the rest of the session and seldom used,

 

Have I missed something? I dont see whats to wrong with water bottles? (between snack times) settings can monitor how much children are drinking alot beter than pouring water from a jug and children are not restricted to sitting while they drink from an open cup they can continue to free access and play if that what settings want.

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We leave a pouring jug that has a lid left available throughout the session with clean cups on one tray and the idea is the used cups are put onto another tray - when we first started this it generated a LOT of interest and water, water everywhere! But the novelty has died down now and there is hardly any mess - the children quickly got the idea (except one (there always is) who loves to fill every cup, but you know what it's like, it doesn't take much to clear up and they can help!) - ours are 2-3yrs so if it works for them it can work for any children.

We were told that water bottles are brilliant, but they do need to pour their own drinks also.

Edited by Guest
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Just a few questions about the water bottles;

 

Do you provide them, wash them up and store them?

 

Do parents provide them, already filled? if so do you get bottles filled with drink other than water? (squash full of E's )

 

We teach our children to drink at the cafe bar, (using cups). How would it work with bottles freely used around the setting? Do they end up everywhere or put back in a certain place by the children, when not being used?

 

If water is in bottles, what system do you use to provide milk?

 

I personally wouldn't like milk in bottles, cleaning the dispenser tops sufficiently would be more time consuming than cups.

 

Peggy

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Peggy, slightly digressing from the water bottle topic - your cafe bar sounds an interesting concept - how do you manage it? do you have a set time for snacks? do the children just help themselves? how do you monitor who has had what to eat? Just thought of throwing out new ideas at our next staff meeting, and wondered about introducing the cafe bar? sounds good fun but I know the type of questions which will come my way . . .

we are a sessiona pre school who meet in a church hall - so do not have a kitchen off the main room, but across the corridor. Currently we have a 'snack time' where 6 children at a time sit with a member of staff - this is great when only few in number - but with 24 children, we need 4 sittings - any ideas greatly appreciated. :o

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Just a few questions about the water bottles;

 

Do you provide them, wash them up and store them?

 

Do parents provide them, already filled?  if so do you get bottles filled with drink other than water?  (squash full of E's )

 

We teach our children to drink at the cafe bar, (using cups). How would it work with bottles freely used around the setting? Do they end up everywhere or put back in a certain place by the children, when not being used?

 

If water is in bottles, what system do you use to provide milk?

 

I personally wouldn't like milk in bottles, cleaning the dispenser tops sufficiently would be more time consuming than cups.

 

Peggy

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Hi Peggy

 

the parents provide the water bottles when the children start nursery, but we fill them always with water.

 

They are stored in a basket type container at children's level, all children know which bottle is theres and only drink from their own. They also return them to the basket once they have finished drinking from them.

 

We use cups for milk at mealtimes

 

Dawn .

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We bought water dispensers from ARGOS and keep them in the snack area on a deep tray with cups which the children can easily fill and place on the dirty tray afterwards.

http://www.argos.co.uk/static/Product/partNumber/2700487.htm

We also have jugs of juice (for pouring) but only when supervised

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Not sure which one you got as link didn't take me to a product :( but my daughter has one of the Groovy Chick ones that only holds 2l adn I've found that the water bottle can be easily knocked off :o

Just wondered if this has been an issue as they have

 

http://www.argos.co.uk/static/Product/partNumber/2700315.htm

 

which is £30. I thought they would be far more expensive!

 

I was discussing the water issue today as a local group was pulled up by Ofsted for water bottles as the children touch the topes while looking for their own... xD

We currently have a jug and a few cups but as has been said already, either all cups are filled by one child or they pour unfinished drinks back into the jug!! (Even though it has a lid!) We were considering disposable cups but I'm a bit 'green' and worry about the wastefulness of this!

I do like hte idea of a bowl to put them in after use though.

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Peggy, slightly digressing from the water bottle topic - your cafe bar sounds an interesting concept  - how do you manage it? do you have a set time for snacks? do the children just help themselves? how do you monitor who has had what to eat? Just thought of throwing out new ideas at our next staff meeting, and wondered about introducing the cafe bar? sounds good fun but I know the type of questions which will come my way . . .

we are a sessiona pre school who meet in a church hall - so do not have a kitchen off the main room, but across the corridor. Currently we have a 'snack time' where 6 children at a time sit with a member of staff - this is great when only few in number - but with 24 children, we need 4 sittings - any ideas greatly appreciated. :o

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Basically we have a mobile cupboard on wheels which stores all the cups/plates/bowls/dried fruits, bread, fruit etc.

 

This is placed next to the snack table. Our kitchen is accessible from the hall, but with planning you would only need to access it to top up milk and water jug.

The children go wash their hands, go to cupboard, get a cup and plate, select foods displayed in centre of table in a round dish with seperate compartments ( this has a lid if required), milk and water jugs to pour own drinks. We have tried different methods for self registration of snack bar, from names on a board, names place in cup ( baker Ross I think they are called "designer cups", there is a clear plastic outer cup with handle, then insert coloured mug in outer cup. Sounds complicated but basically the child can put their name in outer part- I will try to remember to post a pic.

 

We have a nice table cloth and sometimes fresh flowers, just like a real cafe. It opens after initial hello circle time, we involve children in as much food prep as possible, cutting fruit, veg etc. We find dips encourage children to try new vegetables, or yoghurt dips with fruit yum, yum.

 

We plan to develop this activity further by involving children in making up shopping lists and actually going out to buy the food in local shop.

 

Cafe is open from 9am-11am then again straight after lunch. Drink is available all session.

 

Peggy

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p.s. The children soon develop awareness of not eating too much food ( it spoils their lunch), leaving enough food for others, etc. They learn to recognise their own body clocks, we see patterns in when children regularly access the snack bar, ie: Charlie normally before 9:30am, katy not until 10:30am. They can go to it as many times as they like. once they know it is a facility that is always available they don't over use it, just like any other activity in the setting. No child will stay all morning if there are far more interesting things to do elsewhere, however a new child can find the sncak bar a secure place to look on and settle in from. :D

 

We learn so much about the children by observing how they use the snack bar, just like we learn from observing them using the paint area. :o

 

Peggy

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Thanks Peggy - I think I'll brave it out at our staff meeting and propose a few small changes from what we do now, and hopefully build on them - asking staff for new ideas. Your Snack bar sounds lovely. Will keep you in touch with any progress.

!!!!!THANKS!!!!!

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The link should take you to a small 2.5 litre dispenser which are currently on offer for £2.99 we havent had any bottles knocked off the dispensers but initially the children tried to lift them off to pour rather than use the tap.

 

We also opperate a snack bar system which works much better for us than stopping for a snack session.

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We tried it once but the staff didn't mlikemit - some children /parents prefered all sitting down together but with 20 children it is a night mare. We are in one main hall so have to tidy euqipment away etc. Just one question what about children with allergies. ( I know many of ours know what they can and can't eat) How do you manage this Peggy.

 

 

Smiles

 

ps 2.99 water dispensers out of stock in essex

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We tried it once but the staff didn't mlikemit - some children /parents prefered all sitting down together but with 20 children it is a night mare. We are in one main hall so have to tidy euqipment away etc. Just one question what about children with allergies. ( I know many of ours know what they can and can't eat) How do you manage this Peggy.

Smiles

 

ps 2.99 water dispensers out of stock in essex

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Never underestimate children, :o we have had children with food intolerances, rather than allergies, for example milk, they are very aware that if drunk it will make them feel poorly and they have often been heard to remind adults of what they are not allowed to drink ( ie if we have a birthday party, all children together and pour a child a cup of milk by mistake-we are all human of course :( )

 

At present I have a child who has downs syndrome and her mother likes her to eat organic foods which she provides, the other children accept this "difference", knowing we are not all the same, learning to value differences. She knows not to eat what is laid out for others and others know they cannot eat her snacks ( she is 2.5 yrs, other from age 2 yrs) Yes, of course we keep an eye on things but no serious allergies to worry about at present. We would do a risk assessment and adapt practice should we have, for example, a child with serious allergy.

At present we have 3 children with food intolerances, mainly milk or dairy products. Also we have a notice on our kitchen cupboard doors with each childs photo, name and list of foods they are intolerant to. this is for student/volunteers info. In the childs file is a note on what symptoms may occur and treatment should they show an allergic reaction.

 

We do not have home baked foods donated because we check ingredients of foods to avoid for example gluton- which one child is intolerant to.

 

Every activity we do has a risk, it is just a case of doing the best we can to minimise it.

 

One of the reasons I changed to snack bar was the time spent "moving furniture", I even have seperate lunch tables ( much more cosy) than putting tables together. We do enough "removals" at the beginning and end of each day. xD

 

Peggy

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[Peggy, Could you tell me how many places you have at your snack bar? We have introduced a snack bar system this term but are finding problems. I suspect it may be because we have too many children at a time and the snack bar is only open for 45 minutes.

Deb W

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[Peggy, Could you tell me how many places you have at your snack bar?  We have introduced a snack bar system this term but are finding problems.  I suspect it may be because we have too many children at a time and the snack bar is only open for 45 minutes.

Deb W

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Snack bar seats 8 children, open 9:15 - 14:45, no food between 11:15 - 12:30, drink available all the time.

 

Peggy

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