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Snack Bars


Guest sophie
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hi does anyone use a snackbar in their pre-school, nursery etc.

I would like to start one. Do you keep them open all session, part of session are they continually staffed, how is it kept clean, etc? :oxD

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we tried for years to have a succesful snack bar and we have now got one. we open the "cafe" from 10.15 -11.15 in the morning. the cafe is operated by a staff member, the children help to prepare the fruit beforehand. once open, the children collect their name card from the board, wash their hands and go up to the counter. The adult asks what they would like to drink, and the drink is put into an individual jug. the child then collects a cup, takes it to the table and pours their own drink. the staff will then come over to the table with a plate of fruit and the child is asked to count out 3 pieces and puts it on their plate. the children interact wonderfully with each other. The other staff will come one at a time to sit with the children to have their drink and to interact with the children. After the child has finished, their take their cup and plate and wash them up in a bowl of water and put them on a drainer. We have found our "cafe" system to be working brilliantly, we do it every session, enen the 2 year olds can cope with it. its nice to see the older children helping them to. Not meaning to brag, but we have also had 3 other groups visit us to see it in action. We are so proud of it as it took us so long to get it right. It promotes independance, social skills and personal development as well as maths skills. Try it out, the kids gain so much from it and soon follow the routine. We evcen have a piture and word menu board so the children can see what foods and drinks are on offer that day.

hope this helps

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Hi Ruthie

This sounds really good-but how did you introduce it to the children? And how many children can have snack at the same time? We only have enough room for 8 children so what happens if we announce that the snack bar is open and all 32 decide they want to eat? What do you do about those children who don't come along? Do you leave them or encourage them at the start/end?

We also use this time to encourage children to go to the toilet-we still have some who are in pull-ups and need the opportunity to go along with other children and "see what happens"!! We have more and more 3 year olds who are not toilet trained and this is an essential part of their development.

I would be interested to find out!

Linda

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hi linda,

 

We have a table for a maximum of 6 children at one time. At first, we demonstrated to the children how the system works and yes, to begin with their was a mad rush when we opened but they soon get used to it and many of the children are to busy playing to come straight away. we have 26 children on each session. As for those who dont want to come, by the children taking their names of the board, the staff can see who has not been to the cafe. Well, we have what we call a "ping pong" a musical instrument which when used the children know they stand still and be quiet, we use this to quieten down the room because we are in a very large community hall and we dont raise our voices to the children. So before we open and close the cafe, we "ping pong" and tell the children that the cafe will be opening or closing in 10 minutes and if anyone else would like a drink could they come now. After 5 minutes those who have not come, the staff on cafe duty will go to them individualy and ask them. If they do not want to come they do not have to. We have a water dispenser available all session. Another way is if their are 2 friends who have not been try to encourage them to go together, or to ask an older child to take a younger one.

As for toilets, im not sure, our children go to the toliets as and when and are only encouraged to go before lunch time break.

Its worth trying, it took us 2 years to get the right system and the children pick up the new way in about 2 weeks even our 2 year olds.

And OFSTED LOVE IT!

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