I was disgusted but not surprised by a blog comment I read last week underneath an article about Michelle Obama’s new childhood obesity campaign. It’s copied below or you can read it for yourself here:http://is.gd/7AsDh (all the way down,look for comment from saddle4545) A parent stated the following:
“My daughter’s weight problem stated in pre-K. Her caregivers were giving her food and making a game out of eating. They fed her 7 hot dogs and brownies. They told her that she would win a prize if she could eat just one more! When I reported them to the state,their advice was ‘remove her if you don’t like it.’“
In these days and times do we really need to “make”childcare providers do the right thing and teach children how to eat healthy? Wouldn’t you assume a childcare center’s staff would encourage kids to stop eating when they’re full and not reward them for winning food related games? Must we spell out every scenario to be avoided –what happened to common sense?
Perhaps you think something like this is a rare occurrence. Or that the details may have been blown out of proportion. Or,that teaching our kids how to eat right is up to parents. It doesn’t matter,if it happens at all in a place where children spend most of their time and are expected to learn important habits. The point is that these experiences make a permanent stamp on a child’s psyche. Just like you can’t strike a comment from your ears that was already verbalized in a court room,kids are not going to disregard early experiences with food. Even more so if they are frightening or confusing.
What’s it going to take? Higher standards for preschool staff? Fitness and nutrition requirements with stiff fines for violations? Or are we just expecting too much. I was under the impression that teachers should be more on the ball than the students.
What do you think? What’s your knee jerk response to this particular story?