Food in Schools ~Working List Eyeopener

Started by ajasfolks2, September 08, 2011, 08:45:47 PM

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Link to original 22-page thread.

(old link is dead now)

Opening Post:

March 20, 2009

QuotePlease help by adding to this list.

What I'm after is a list of events/lessons where food is used in schools -- OTHER than reg scheduled Bfast/Lunch served by cafeteria.

Below is what I've come up with off the top of my head.

PLEASE add to this list as to events you've encountered in your school -- public or private school -- where food has been used.

THANKS!  Project related to this in the works.
(I kind of went in order of school year . . . for those with traditional school calendar)


"Back to School" party
Johnny Appleseed
Pumpkin Day
Fall Harvest
Martin Luther King Day
Pres Inaugural Day
Valentine's Day
President's Day
St. Patrick's Day
Bunny Day
May Day
Mother's Day
Flag Day
End of School

Each child's birthday party
Teacher's birthday party
Student Star of the Week (weekly party)
End of Quarter/Unit parties
Cafeteria Behavior Reward Parties
Movie Days

Regular In-class rewards (candy)

100th Day
Dr. Seuss celebration
Class Play (cast party -- no, not making this one up)

Rewards for collecting the most ______ (donations, typically)

Jump Rope for Heart party

Fall Festival
Spring Festival

Academic "Field Day"
Physical Fitness "Field Day"

Presidential Fitness "testing" days

Long-term substitute teacher -- "you were so good for me" party

Math -- using candy to count

Again, thanks for suggestions and additions. 

This comprehensive list will be very helpful to open eyes, is my hope.  It illustrates the extreme use of food in schools, all directions, and can serve as a starting point to begin to REDUCE this practice and eventually eliminate.


Editing to add a related link in our School Resources section:

Food as Rewards or Incentives--
The never ending struggle

Is this where I blame iPhone and cuss like an old fighter pilot's wife?

**(&%@@&%$^%$#^%$#$*&      LOL!!   


Follow on posts:

QuoteHow could I forget this one?

Pizza hut Book-it program

Spirit Award


eggshells used as 'selectively permeable membranes.'

ALSO used to 'grow crystals' (to produce a geode-like model)

used as 'green' planting containers

Whole eggs used as 'test subjects' for a variety of purposes  (often engineering related.... but occasionally for 'take care of a baby' weeks, too....)

*&%^$ peanut-butter birdfeeders... or peanut-suet birdfeeders...

Science using recycled food containers, food waste, or samples for examination with hand lenses/microscopes.

Classroom pet foods.


Macaroni projects

Seed mosaics

Eggshell mosaics

Egg dying/decorating...

Cooking in class (whole other category, this one....  UGH.)

Quotecultural festival

Pastries for Parents for National Reading Month

Pizza party reward (still to be confirmed) for some reading award


  • Valentines hearts used for graphing and probability in math lesson
  • Food for lesson on senses (for example, Sour Patch Kids used for sour sample)
  • Food used in science lesson (oil and water, sugar, flour used)
  • Churning butter for Thanksgiving celebration as an example of colonial crafts/work
  • Collecting used wrappers of cookies/juice boxes as PTO fundraiser (some of wrappers listed on form included NutterButter cookies)

QuoteMy daughter's school has frequent pizza and ice cream parties.

They took apart tomatoes and something else (cucumbers?) to see how many seeds were inside.

They used dried beans as counters.

Did M & M math.

QuoteDARE pizza party

Doughnuts with Dad

Muffins with Mom

Classroom teacher retirement party (I've got that one coming up to plan for)

Pumpkin Math

edit to add:  Collecting milk caps as fundraiser

Student Council pizza party as a reward for _____ (at least once a year)

Spelling Challenge fundraiser -- ice cream party for class with most pledges/money raised

Quotedd class just read some blueberry story and they all had to bring a blueberry treat to school to share  :banghead:

QuoteThis is maybe extracurricular, but they worked once a week during the school day and then had a district competition after school:

Future Problem Solving district competition (TAG program) with pizza party

Quote100 day celebration, fire drill reward, rice used as a weight in winter craft.

Colonial crafts reminded me of this one...

WALNUT SHELLS used as a dye/ink.

Selling popcorn and home ec-baked cookies as a fundraiser right after school lets out

Selling lollipops before/after school as a fundraiser --- buy one for your friend and we will deliver it to your friend (during class time) with a message from you!

QuoteStudent government/student publication fundraisers..... UGH.
Yup.... whereby, for just a buck, you can send a CANDY-GRAM to a student, staffer, or teacher during HOMEROOM time.... 

Halloween candy-grams, Christmas candy-grams, Valentines candy-grams, Columbus Day Candy-grams....

Arbor Day candy-grams....

Vernal Equinox Candy-Grams......

Dia de los Ninos Candy Grams....

National Pet Week Candy-Grams...     :banghead:

QuoteBand and athletic team fundraisers--

World's Best Chocolate bars....  

(Both these and the Candy-Grams tend to make an appearance beginning in Middle School.)

(end page 1 original thread)

Is this where I blame iPhone and cuss like an old fighter pilot's wife?

**(&%@@&%$^%$#^%$#$*&      LOL!!   


More (Page 2, orig thread)

QuoteBack-to-school ICE CREAM SOCIAL for families, students, and staff.
  (:disappointed: yes, really.)

we have the back to school ice cream social, too.

Ready to PUKE yet?!

Please keep em' coming!

Ya' might be wondering what I'm/we're up to?

Or not.

QuoteNo.... no... I think I get the picture. video.   ;D

same lines, we just had student counsel send "lucky-grams" on St Patty's, which were those caramel apple suckers.  Fine for most people, but not when you have a milk allergy.   :disappointed:

QuoteThis one blew MY MIND...

'Bake Sale at the Capitol.'

Put on by one 'oh-so-very-clever' group of parents in support of THEIR school.... and set up inside the state capitol.

Designed to coincide with a bunch of charter schools holding field trips and a rally that same day.   :banghead:

QuoteCirriculum based activities:
Growing Seeds (peas, grass, beans)
Nutritional Cirriculum Wrap up (buffet of Nutritional foods donated and prepared by parents)
Nutritional Assembly with tasting stations
French class menu activity (they wanted to have kids share an item on their menu.  Nixed after a certain mom started asking how this would be inclusive for her son)
Crayfish in classroom for some science thing
Recycled food containers for art and classroom storage

QuoteDon't forget the gingerbread houses/people and the bird seed used for "reindeer" food.

Decorating cookies for every and any holiday.

"Deck the Halls" festival to decorate the school for Christmas (or Winter).

Root beer float party to celebrate a well job done fund raising.

Homecoming celebrations.

(very helpful and comprehensive thread)  :yes:

Oh yes...can't forget the ice cream social and the school carnival.

Back to school refreshments of nutty cookies (Back to School night is parents only--though some still bring kids)

PTO events (Movie nights, Bingo nights, etc.) that serve pizza, candy (including Snickers and M&Ms) and other refreshments

QuoteHaven't even touched on the after-school clubs/activities --

Chess club and foods/snacks come to mind.  BandBmom?   ;)

You all are GREAT!

Keep 'em coming -- the more the better . . . . sometimes there are regional specialties so far as food-centric events/activities . . . .

OK -- Dairy-centric for those in heavily-dairy areas such as Wisconsin.  Peanut-centric for those in Georgia, Virginia, Texas, etc.  Cupcake-centric for those living in cupcake-hell.

Oh, sorry.  That's ALL of us.  Nevermind!


QuoteLinking to this thread here to remind myself to harvest info from it:

Drop Everything And Read (DEAR) Breakfasts

Chinese New Year

All School Food Celebration for completion of Standardized Testing

School Carnival

Curriculum Night Ice Cream Social

Harvest Celebration

"It's a Hot Day so I brought Popsicles for the Class" (random moms on random days)

Special Artist Days (run by PTO, with snacks to say "good job kids!")

HALF birthdays

TEACHER birthdays

Putting this here -- part of project genesis --

I forgot about the

"I saw these at the bakery and couldn't resist" type drop-offs

Halloween cookies
Thanksgiving cookies
Christmas cookies
Valentine's cookies

Of course, there are those who get the "I made an extra batch for ____'s sister/brother's class since I was making them anyway" type of drop-offs.


End page 2, original thread
Is this where I blame iPhone and cuss like an old fighter pilot's wife?

**(&%@@&%$^%$#^%$#$*&      LOL!!   


Page 3, original thread

Quotedon't forget the field trips (lunches, food on bus, food at destination CSC comes to mind)

Oh yea!  Also, don't forget the field trips that take NO extra energy/exertion -- just bring along food to deal with the boredom (or whatever).

QuoteDaily Snack time
Snacks at Aftercare

Cinco de Mayo!

It's one finger food festival. The ENTIRE school can participate, like, every classroom. Especially in the older grades.

QuoteDon't forget the substitute teacher who brings cookies from the bakery to "make friends" with the kids -- and doesn't bother to read the teacher's file noting a child with LTFA in the class.

That reminds me --- a "healthy" snack every day of ITBS testing, for two weeks.

Good heavens -- I'm a sub and I have never even thought of bringing food "to make friends with the kids!" Wow. And I won't be.


food rewards....

Quote"Smarties" candy as "brain food" given before a test.   >:(
I do NOT appreciate this one, even w/o FA.

Jog a thon (school fundraiser done during school hours) - Popsicles afterwards
Weekly ice cream sales after school - fundraiser

Pretzels & cheerios to "make" teen numbers
Candy for graphing - done for many, many days

Making applesauce, stone soup, cookies

Parent presentations - sometimes they bring food/candy

Reward class parties - rewards for behavior - when the whole class behaves, they get a new letter in a phrase & then have a party once they have all the letters - so far we've had a popcorn party, hot chocolate party & pinata party & pizza party is coming

Oh yeah, we had a jumprope-a-thon. There was food; I don't know what. We didn't participate.

Has anyone included Field Day yet?

Stone Soup.

Candy grams.

Popsicles after walk-a-thon. 

Cookies or Donuts decorated to match local sports teams can show up on any day there is a game. Extremely likely to show up if there is a big game, like the Stanley Cup, Super Bowl, March Madness.

graphing with food:
valentine candy hearts
lucky charms

Lucky charms for st. patricks day
fruit loop necklaces for 100th day

I think most of the things I can think of have been covered already.

OH--what about food and food wrappers in projects--using food or things around the house to make turkeys was one.  Some people used food wrappers, others used coffee, beans, etc.  There was something nutty on one of them.  ~)

QuoteYou may already have these...I'm too lazy to read the rest of the thread.  ;)

- Pancake breakfast fundraisers
- Home ec classes
- School dances
- Principal passing out candy during testing "to give them an energy boost"
- LANGUAGE CLASSES. With the explanation that the food supports cultural learning about the country and is mandatory. Idiots.
- Pi (pie) day. March 14th. Get it? 3.14 = March 14th. Is this just our school district? Both my kids took in pie that day.
- Pizza Hut reading program.

End page 3, original thread
Is this where I blame iPhone and cuss like an old fighter pilot's wife?

**(&%@@&%$^%$#^%$#$*&      LOL!!   


Page 4, Original thread

(Still March 9, 2009, FYI)

Oh, and I can't even tell you how many endless crafts and activities. The most unusual one though was on the outdoor ed trip. (The one they weren't going to let my husband go on.) They were filling squirt guns during the water fight with water stored in milk jugs. Most were not clean. The kids were aiming for the mouth.

God help us. How do we ever manage to keep our kids safe?

QuoteRecycled candy wrappers used for art projects.


fancy cellophane wrappers and foil wrappers used for decoupage...

and also used to make those stupid folded interlocking necklaces/bracelets.  You know-- the ones that people used to make from gum wrappers or cigarette foil?

QuoteI would encourage one-and-ALL to adapt this list to your particular situation and then fill in the details (as we -- our family --  are working to do -- student project and PARENT presentation we are working on . . . ) --

List the FOODS served each time.
Table/graph the foods and the cals/grams fat/grams carb
Total the # of days of school vs. the # of food use activities
Provide graphic that illustrates the TIME lost as well for these events.

Other suggestions for illustrating the general health detriment this whole food-in-schools thing REALLY is?

Sometimes we ALL need to see this -- in black and white or LARGE GRAPHIC PRESENTATION -- to realize the depth of the problem AND/OR to present the problem in a format that perhaps school nurses/admin/superintendents/504C/teachers etc will GET.

More when I can -- please feel free to add things you think of . . .



being human
Quotenut shells for craft,
beans for craft activites.
empty egg boxes, and cereal boxes for craft .

frozen beans, used for science lesson, de-frosted beans used for maths lesson.

farm visits, ducks with eggs ( nursery age children)

cake sales.

after school sport activties, refreshments include biscuits/cookies..........( when I was a kid it was a 1/4 orange and drink of water!!!, why dont they still do that?)

And well meaning, but forgetful teaachers making their own cakes  for the children on last day of school.

and the nice christmas card, wishing a safe and allergy free new year. with two chocolate coins taped inside. .............

New one today - Teddy Bear Tea Party

Hatching eggs in classroom

QuoteNew one today - Teddy Bear Tea Party

You know, I see these things and I'm wondering where the counterpart lesson is?

Perhaps the ER - experiencing - a - stroke - due - to - high - blood  - pressure PARTY?

Or the  Kidney - Dialysis - Party for those who developed diabetes early and completely KILLED their internal organs due to their ingestion of excessive amounts of sugar and fat?

How about THAT one?


Yeo-and we're encouraging reliance on Teddy Bears and other comfort items.

Did we already mention Mothers Day Tea Party? Volunteer Appreciation Breakfasts? Teachers Christmas Party?-was held in the Library last ear instead of the staff lounge!

Crafts sales at Christmas which include baked goods and can include free samples...

We just had a Teddy Bear Tea party too. I couldn't believe it. Especially that I found out about it at 4:15 p.m. the afternoon before. Thank goodness I happened to have a teddy bear cookie cutter on hand. I thought the Teddy Bear Tea was something fancy I took DD to at the Ritz Carlton before her FA diagnosis NOT something at school. Sheesh.

Another new one - Big Buddies Ice Cream Party (first graders have a "big buddy" third grader). Any excuse for food.

being human
years of bloody teddy bears tea parties..................why dont they ask the kids to suck down some honey? might help if it was local honey and be some sort of good for us! 

Easter egg roll.

QuoteOH crap.

I forgot entirely about THAT genre of events, Momcat.   :banghead:

Field Day events with eggs...

'egg drop' activities (to build something that will 'protect' the egg... or, um.. not.)

Spoon races-- (basically, a group of kids RUNNING around a field with tablespoons which are holding raw eggs)

Food Art activity booths-- this one is a veritable crap-sundae for any person with food allergies.  ~)  Draw-a-face-on-the-egg/gourd/sandwich/orange/cheeseball/etc, etc.  The 'best' of these allows you to walk around with your finished CREATION...  Ick.

Penny carnival...

Complete with a PEANUT TOSS.  (a carnival game in which kids toss nuts in the shell into a booth filled with coffee-cans/cups in an attempt to get one into a container...)

Our school was egged more than once. Including the door to DS's classroom.

Earth day trash pickup activity.

End page 4, original thread.
Is this where I blame iPhone and cuss like an old fighter pilot's wife?

**(&%@@&%$^%$#^%$#$*&      LOL!!   


Quote from: ajasfolks2 on October 19, 2011, 03:57:46 PM
THIS is a 22-page thread in its original form.  I'm posted up through page 4 today (Oct 20, 2011)

Sorry!  Thread is locked right now as I continue trying to move this big thread over using quotes.

I've started a "Part 2" if you've got posts to add.  Please put them there & we'll combine if we need to once I'm done with this:

Thanks for your patience!

ADDING APOLOGY 3/4/2016:  Never had time to fully reconstruct the OLD thread and pull it from old boards before they "killed" our boards over at Hyperboards.  I'm sorry.  I hate that it's not all here too.

Continuation thread (where you may post & add on your experiences):

Food in Schools, Part Deux
Is this where I blame iPhone and cuss like an old fighter pilot's wife?

**(&%@@&%$^%$#^%$#$*&      LOL!!