My top tip for getting my children to eat their lunches is quite simple – they make their own!
This has a slew of benefits for them and for me! But first, you must follow the “division of responsibility” in feeding or your child could be going to school with a six pack of crisps and a butter sandwich!
Developed by American feeding guru Ellyn Satter, the division of responsibility in feeding strategy, in a nutshell, advises:
The responsibility of the parent is:
- to provide and prepare the food
- provide food regularly in a pleasant environment
The responsibility of the child is:
- to eat
- to eat what and as much as they want
So what this means is that if you don’t want your child to bring a six-pack of crisps to school, don’t provide a six-pack of crisps t0 choose from. Only provide your child with the food that you want them to eat, then allow them to choose what they want to eat.
This holds true not just for making lunches but across all mealtimes. It is not our responsibility as parents to bribe/cajole/threaten our children to eat – it is simply our job to provide the food and our child’s to then decide if they want to eat it or not.
So when you have established this simple strategy in the house, lunch making becomes easy. I provide a range of foods I want my children to eat like good quality protein, wholemeal carbs and plenty of fruit and veggies. They decide what they want and make their lunches every morning. They eat them because they chose it. Plus, I don’t have to make the lunches so it’s a complete win/win!