Day 25: chicken nuggets

Today’s menu: chicken nuggets, green beans, orange, bread, butter, milk
Veggies and fruit! What a combo. And I’ve always thought of bread and butter as a comfort food.
The only thing – it would be nice if the oranges were sliced to save the kids time and to make it easier for the kids with fine motor issues to eat them.

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22 thoughts on “Day 25: chicken nuggets

  1. Just glad they are getting fruit and veg, albeit in a mutated form. At least the orange isn't frozen like the fruit cups.

  2. Ya but how many kids are going to eat an orange when the only way to open it is finger nails or a spork?

  3. Aren't there adults assigned to the lunchroom to help the little kids? I can't imagine the time it would take for the cafeteria staff to pre-slice hundreds of oranges. It's probably why most of the fruit you've already seen is from a can (and then put in those cardboard dishes).

  4. I'm an elementary school nurse and am following your project with great interest.
    As a nurse, I'm particularly concerned about the nutritional value of the lunches for kids with chronic disease, especially diabetes. It's frustrating that these lunches that "meet federal standards" are about the last meals I would choose for a person with diabetes.

    However, I do see a huge benefit to the existence of these lunches. I see first-hand the effects of poverty on nutrition and obesity. The school lunch program is supposed to be one of the safety nets to help kids who need it. One of my two schools has a 90% free/reduced population and I know that for many of my students, breakfast and lunch at school is the only food they get. Do your students have breakfast available as well?

    Thanks for bringing attention to the plight of school lunches. Good luck as you continue your project!

  5. That looks frightening. You're doing a great thing by bringing attention to this. Try to get your local news television station involved – they're always looking for stories and it'd benefit you! Will keep checking back to see how it goes.

  6. I agree with you! Our cafeteria just started with the butter. The kids lick the very last morsel out of the little containers…yuk! On top of the horrible nutrition value…we're sure setting them up for poor diets! Wish there were something that could be done!

  7. I love the orange but have to agree — I know my son wouldn't bother peeling it, but he would definitely eat it if sliced — if nothing else, to shove the slice in his mouth and wear it like a denture.

  8. It looks like the meals are getting more balanced. Or maybe this week is just a fluke… Granted, the chicken nuggets are fried but are probably a good source of protein. And then they have and orange PLUS veggies? I am impressed (for once).

  9. The lunch is "too bad" – but again, this is probably the best meal these kids get all day. Probably we could do a better job giving them healthy food – fried chicken nuggets should be a "treat", you know – like what you get if your parents take you out every month or so to McDonald's. Fried, greasy food shouldn't be an everyday thing.

    I'm sure you heard about Michelle Obama's announcement yesterday – the Let's Get Moving campaign. What did you think about it?

  10. Every time I see you post a piece of whole fruit, I wonder how many kids actually eat it. I know kids will, often, gobble up fruit — IF it's all cut up for them.

    Also, I wonder why it's so hard to have turkey sandwiches on the menu? My kids aren't yet in school, but I looked at the menu for the month that's posted online. They actually do list turkey sandwiches, but there's a LOT more things like pizza, hot dogs, and nuggets.

    What about little bags of baby carrots with a little dip? Celery sticks? I see all this pre-packaged stuff in the grocery stores, but not in the schools.

  11. I guess it depends on the school. My school has both baby carrots in little bags, as well as apple slices.

  12. That doesn't look like much food. I think my tummy would be rumbling before it was time to leave school for the day. 🙁

  13. I'm curious– is it actually butter, or is it margarine?

    And I just noticed (it being the last Friday before Lent) that you haven't had any fish yet this year. Can that really be? When we keep hearing about all he benefits of eating fish…

  14. Didn't you mention that the kids only get 20 minutes for lunch? When I was a kid I got 30 minutes (and then recess right after… do they even have recess anymore?), and even as a teenager working as a cashier at a mall, my bosses were required by law to give us at least 30 minutes for lunch. Even then 30 minutes seems like just barely enough time to eat a full meal and relax a bit.

    I bet a lot of those oranges get thrown away. And then some school official looks at that and goes, "See? The kids don't eat oranges anyway. Let's give them tator tots instead. They always eat those."

  15. What about….carrots, just cut up carrots? Little bags of baby carrots are processed carrots: chopped out of "imperfect" carrots, and rinsed in a chlorine-solution. Yum.

    Kids who aren't regularly offered fresh fruit see it as a treat. In my school you can smell the syrup when you walk in on pancake day, but you can also smell the fresh oranges and see the peel under teacher's fingernails from "opening" them up. I love this blog, so brave and timely. Kids appreciate good food, or at least they should:)

  16. go to to learn more about unhealthy school luch and how to approach administration to make a change!

  17. I am an advertising student, near graduation. In one of my classes we a currently creating a campaign to encourage mothers to stand up to school administration and fight for a change in school lunches. my blog is about our creative process. SUPERMOMS!

  18. When i was in school i ate school lunch everyday. One of my school mates and my favorite things to do was to see how far our chicken nuggets would bounce or how many purple veins our nuggets had. Our hot dogs were used as swords because really that's really that's the only appropriate use for the inedible hot dog fraud. Both the hot dogs and the chicken nuggets were on the menu at least twice a month each. Needless to say our school food was not the best thing for anyone. I think this blog is wonderful and i hope it brings some needed change.

  19. There's a one-stroke restaurant lemon slicer that would turn that orange into 8 wedges in an instant. The kids gets six, he's happy, the food goes farther and actually gets eaten.

  20. Our school just participated in national school breakfast week! They opened their doors to all parents and said"Come join us for breakfast!" so I went expexcting to find simalar to what I have seen posted her. I was shocked….They were serving REAL eggs, hot chocolate & milk & juice. Yogurt as well as fresh (locally grown) fruit. No syro-foam trays, they use the old hard plastic kind that you put the food right on, and when you were done eating, they had a bin for napkins and paper a bin for liquids and food and a bin for the milk cartons and plastic. Then you return your tray to the cafe and get this…..they wash it!

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