Appleby Primary School has six Phunky Foods ambassadors from Year Four who have worked together with Gill, our Phunky Foods representative, to help promote the importance of a balanced diet. They have used resources from our Phunky Foods box, such as the Eatwell guide poster and sorting cards, to teach the other members of their class about nutrition and the different categories that our every-day meals belong to. They have also undertaken a survey in their class to gauge their general understanding of what a balanced diet consists of and to discover the kinds of foods that their peers enjoy.
The Early Years Foundation Stage took part in the Strive for Five workshop in the Autumn term where the children were able to learn new skills and taste a variety of healthy foods. There are also multiple links between the available Phunky Foods activities and the current topic of food, farming and growth in Nursery and Reception.
Phunky Foods has been linked to our Design and Technology curriculum throughout the Spring term. In Year One and Two, the theme has been healthy breakfasts. We introduced the topic through the use of the Eatwell Guide and sorted breakfast foods into categories according to their nutritional value. The children all took part in the Breakfast Bagels workshop and enjoyed learning new vocabulary such as ‘wholemeal’, and trying different fruits and vegetables. We have also discussed the term ‘Eat a Rainbow’ in Key Stage One to emphasise the benefits of having a variety of vitamins and minerals in their diet, as well as how the variety of colours can make our designs look more exciting. Since taking part in the workshop, the children have designed, constructed and evaluated bagel boxes, decorated with African patterns to link to their topic on Madagascar.
In Year Three and Four, the theme has been healthy lunches. The children were introduced to the Eatwell Guide by the ambassadors. We also used a world map activity from Phunky Foods about where our food comes from and from this, the children identified different countries and continents that common foods are grown and sold in. The children have designed, constructed and evaluated lunchbox prototypes with multiple compartments and cutlery inside with their own personal designs on. Next half term, Year Three and Four will take part in the Healthy Lunches workshop and make a pasta salad.
In Year Five and Six, the theme has been sustainability. We introduced the Eatwell guide and categorised different foods before discussing the nutritional value of each one. The children then explored the concept of food miles using a world map and linked this to their knowledge of climate change. We have discussed the term ‘sustainable’ in relation to food and farming and discovered the Fairtrade Foundation and its links to areas in our own locality. From our discussions on climate change and the environment, the children have designed and constructed snack boxes made from sustainable materials including recycled card, biodegradable cellulose, aluminium foil and zero-plastic Sellotape. The children took part in the Snack Attack workshop before Easter where they made a pea, feta and mint dip. They enjoyed learning new skills such as blending, peeling and using a juicer.
As well as in mainstream school, Phunky Foods has benefitted our centre for children with special educational needs. The children have used the Eatwell guide mat to discuss where different ingredients go in the recipes they have cooked, such as toppings on a pizza. The children have also been encouraged to make healthy choices and try foods that they may not necessarily have tried before. They have also been able to practise the skill of following instructions for a recipe which has supported their information processing needs.
The workshops delivered by Gill this year have also supported staff in our school. We have been able to observe new teaching styles and learn the most safe and age-appropriate manner in which to handle the themes of kitchen safety and food hygiene, which we will be able to use and adapt in our own future planning.
The Phunky Foods scheme at Appleby has been a powerful and practical way of teaching our children the importance of a healthy lifestyle. They have been able to try new foods, learn new skills and prepare food alongside their parents and relatives who we have been lucky enough to invite into our school. It has enabled us to link our Design and Technology work to many other areas of the curriculum including PSHE, Geography, Mathematics, Science and Art.
A case study by Appleby Primary