Breakfast in the Classroom
What is BIC?
If you haven’t had experience with breakfast in the classroom before, watch this quick video to get a better idea of what the program looks like and you’ll get an idea of why it’s such a successful and beneficial program for students.
Why Breakfast? Why in the Classroom?
- Eating a complete and nutritious breakfast has proven positive benefits and decreases the risk of food insecurity.
- Access to school breakfast decreases the risk of marginal food insecurity and breakfast skipping, especially for children from low-income households.
- Students have improved nutrient intake as a result of a program of school breakfast offered free to all students and decreases symptoms of hunger.
In addition to the health and hunger-related benefits of a school breakfast program, offering breakfast in the classroom is proven to result in even more benefits to students:
- A breakfast in the classroom program boosts student breakfast participation.
- Student math and reading achievement test scores improve when breakfast is moved out of the cafeteria and into the classroom.
- Students attending schools that offer a breakfast free to all students are more likely to consume a nutritionally substantive breakfast and to consume significantly more calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, fruit, and dairy products at breakfast, when compared to students from schools with a traditional school breakfast in the cafeteria program.
- Children who increase their school breakfast participation as a result of a school breakfast program offered free to all students show improvements in math scores, attendance, punctuality, depression, anxiety, and hyperactivity.
How does it work?
- School nutrition staff packs breakfasts into coolers or insulated bags to be transported to each classroom. Staff often prepare in advance for the next day’s breakfast, packing non-perishable items in crates and packing milk in coolers in the walk-in refrigerator.
- Breakfast is delivered to the classroom either by school nutrition staff or designated students, and is served by the teacher or each student can pick up a meal before taking a seat at the start of the school day.
- Teachers or school nutrition staff record which or how many students eat breakfast and students eat at their desks during the first 10-15 minutes of class.
- Students eat breakfast during morning announcements or while the teacher takes attendance, checks homework, or reviews lessons.
- Some teachers also use breakfast in the classroom as a means to teach valuable nutrition lessons or incorporate breakfast into reading, science, or math lessons.
- Students clear breakfast trash and wipe down desks. Breakfast trash can be placed in the hallway to be collected by custodial staff and liquid milk can be discarded in the sink or, if there is no sink, in a designated bucket.
- Custodial staff collect the trash from the hallways after breakfast and coolers, bags, and any leftover food are picked up by school nutrition staff or returned to the cafeteria by designated students or volunteers.
The menu for schools who are serving BIC is going to start out simple. Every student will have the option of selecting a breakfast comprised of a main entrée, a side of fruit, a milk and another side item like a granola bar or chilled juice.
Please contact the Food Services Department at 413-772-1334 with any questions or concerns.
Breakfast in the Classroom fact sheet: http://breakfastintheclassroom.org/about-partners-for-breakfast-in-the-classroom/fact-sheet/
BIC Videos: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SJym_vMK1ek