We see a lot on the media about the rise of obesity in Australia but this awareness has really hit home here at GCC over the past few months. I’ve had many primary staff in particular share their concern about what our students are eating at school and I’ve been quite startled by what I have learned. My main concern is what we see parents ordering for their children from the GCC Tuckshop.
Our Tuckshop is a wonderful service for our families. It is there for those who prefer not to have the daily lunch preparation task, who rely on it when the cupboard is bare and as an occasional treat once or twice a term.
Whether you use it on a daily basis, as a back-up plan, or as a treat here are four ways to use the GCC Tuckshop to combat obesity:
- Your child is not going to starve at school! Some parents are ordering huge amounts of food for their children. Most children are more interested in playing with their friends than eating so they will eat when hungry and then go to play, leaving the rest in their lunchbox to waste or they throw it in the bin adding to landfill. If we get our children used to eating large amounts in one setting their body will adapt to that and it will be a hard habit to break!
- Learn your colours. Our Tuckshop Menu is colour-coded according to the latest healthy eating guidelines. If it’s green, it’s good but if it is orange then select sparingly and only for occasional treats. You will notice that there are no red colour-coded foods on our Tuckshop menu and we may even phase out some of the orange foods if they continue to be over ordered. We have a large variety of salads, wraps, rolls, sandwiches and sushi to choose from along with fruit, water and plain milk.
- Hot food does not store well in your child’s schoolbag. When you order a lot of hot food for first break your child won’t get through it all and will put it in his or her bag for later on. You can imagine how quickly bacteria will multiply in the food stashed in your child’s bag! We are careful to ensure that your child receives their food at the correct temperature according to food safety guidelines. Order sparingly and place a separate order for first break and another one for second break.
- Use the GCC Tuckshop menu as a teaching tool. We know your weeks are busy so sit down with your child over the weekend and plan their lunches with them in advance. Talk to them about green and orange foods, ask them how much they normally eat and how much they have to throw out. Set the limits for occasional orange food and ask them when they would like a planned treat. For example, if you set the limit as one orange coded item three times a term, ask your child what days they would like to enjoy them.
Tuckshop is one element of eating healthy at school but the other area is lunches brought from home. I will comment on this in another blog soon.
Your child may not be obese or even overweight but eating too much unhealthy food is bad in ways not always obvious at this time in their lives. Bad habits as a child will continue into adulthood.
Let’s join together in helping GCC students be as healthy as they can be as children and into their adult lives.
Congratulations U15 Volleyball Champions
Congratulations to Aiden McKellar and JD Theron (Year 10) who won gold for Queensland at the School Sport Australia Volleyball Championships last week in Bendigo. The boys were selected for the team following the Regional Championships earlier in the year. They won all but one game during the week!
This was an amazing opportunity and testament to the volleyball program offered at GCC. A special thanks to Jarred Pienaar whose passion for the game and coaching in Year 8 and 9 inspired a love of volleyball for Aiden and JD.
Here is a link to an article that tells the story in more detail: Bendigo Advertiser
Mike Curtis, Principal