Party and holiday celebrations at school are a unique way to make healthy eating fun and exciting for children.
Take advantage of classroom celebrations to practise the good eating habits you've been teaching your students by serving tasty and nutritious foods.
Use Canada's Food Guide to help plan classroom celebrations. If parents are providing foods for special school occasions or parties, suggest that they send healthy choices such as:
Children are always interested in the festivals of other children around the world. Ask students to discuss festivals relevant to their cultural background or present some to the class:
Diwali is celebrated throughout India for a period of five days either in October or November. People light up their homes with clay oil lamps and prepare special foods.
Did you know that Indian cuisine has become increasingly popular? Indian grocery stores are common in Brampton and Mississauga and stock the herbs and spices needed for authentic Indian cooking.
Hanukkah is a holiday that honours the struggle of ancient Jews to restore the Temple of Jerusalem. Jews today celebrate the Eight Days of Hanukkah and call it the "Festival of Lights." They light a special candleholder called a menorah. Hanukkah is usually celebrated in December.
Potato latkes are a traditional Hanukkah dish. Potatoes are grated with onion and mixed with flour and eggs. The mixture is moulded into small cakes and fried in olive oil.
Did you know that 'Shalom' is how you greet someone in Israel? It's also how you say good-bye. 'Shalom' is the Hebrew word for peace.
This festival takes place over 15 days between the end of January and the middle of February. Its main message is "peace and happiness for family members and friends." Chinese New Year is also called "Spring Festival".
Did you know that dairy products such as milk, butter and cheese are not part of the everyday Chinese diet? Instead, soybean products provide protein and calcium.
Adapted from materials produced by Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Health Unit, Brant County Health Unit and Peel Public Health.
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Revised: Wednesday December 05 2012