What kind of tea if your children have hot lunch at school

(39 Posts)
disorganisedmummy Mon 25-Mar-13 17:09:29

Hi.I'm after some advice.I have two boys 5 and nearly 7 who have a hot lunch plus pudding at school.I'm told and have it on good authority that they clear their plates most days.
My question is,would you then give them another big tea i.e.-spag bol/shep pie that kind of thing or sandwhiches/scrambled egg on toast/anything on toast/bagel?They normally have a lighter tea plus yoghurt of fruit but I'm worries that they're not getting enough variety in their diet.One boy eats anything and one is a fussy sod so it's quite hard to cater for both.They seem quite happy to have sarnies I think mainly cos it means they can get back to the tv quicker.
What would you all do?

whattodoo Mon 25-Mar-13 17:12:03

I generally do beans on toast, or sandwiches with salad or soup or similar. Followed by yoghurt or fruit or cake we've made together or similar.

We had hot choc when we got home from school today as its so cold!

CaptainSweatPants Mon 25-Mar-13 17:13:40

We do sandwiches or toast or omelette

5eggstremelychocaletymadeggs Mon 25-Mar-13 17:15:41

Mine have the same as they do if they have had a packed lunch.

Ime the school.dinners arent great and portions are the same size from reception through to yr 6, my elder ones are always starving after school!

Some days we have an easy dinner of beans on toast/soup etc and then fruit for afters maybe with ice cream or custard weather depending.

disorganisedmummy Mon 25-Mar-13 17:17:09

Thanks for the quick replies.That's great,it's good to know that others do the same sort of things.Sometimes I need a little re-assurance!

mynameisnotmichaelcaine Mon 25-Mar-13 17:19:18

Depends totally on what else we have on. Today they're having shepherd's pie as I've not been at work (am p/t). On my days at home I normally cook a hot meal in the evening, but if I'm at work or they have an activity which eats into the evening, they have scrambled egg on toast or sandwiches. In fairness I consider scrammers and toast or beans on toast to be quite a good meal if it's with decent bread and perhaps some cherry toms on the side. Would they eat mushrooms on toast? My ds loves this.

Mine are absolute gannets though, so most days probably need a second hot meal. As long as they are growing well and eating a healthy diet across the week, I wouldn't worry about it.

ihearsounds Mon 25-Mar-13 17:19:26

A hot meal. I am only doing one meal, and there is no way am I going to give them a sandwich whilst I sit and eat a meal. The meals in school aren't that great in portion size and nutrition. Plus I know if they went over 12 hours on a sandwich or light snack they would bug me in that time for something to eat.

disorganisedmummy Mon 25-Mar-13 17:20:12

5eggs,the dinners are pretty good but I'm not sure about portion size.My problem is fitting it all in.We're normally home by 3.30.They have an afternoon snack at school but then want something when they get in. I aim tea for 5-5.30 as they go up for showers/tory/bed around 6.15-6.30.It all sounds very regimented but it's not quite that bad.My youngest gets pretty exhausted and is hard to manage if he gets too overtired.

MintChocCh1p Mon 25-Mar-13 18:04:11

I have a 6 year old boy and when he has a school dinner I give him...

beans on toast with grated cheese
jacket potato with fish fingers and veg
sandwiches/crisps/fruit/biscuits
cheese on toast
soup and bread and butter

snoworneahva Mon 25-Mar-13 18:09:22

Quality of school food varies hugely, our school lunches are pretty shit and contain a large proportion of processed food, even though they suggest they don't. I don't see them as a substitute for a proper freshly cooked dinner - portions are tiny and the quality is low.
Even if the quality was sufficient, I've always eaten dinner with my kids and therefore we always have something substantial regardless of what they've had at school, if they weren't hungry they just ate less.

Mine have hot lunches at school and a proper dinner at home. No way would I just give them a sandwich for dinner! My 6 year old goes to bed at 7 and we eat at 5 so there is plenty of time for baths, homework etc. They have activities most days too (9 and 11 year old too and a 13 month old baby) but still see friends as well.
They can easily have a snack after school such as fruit, crackers something similar and then eat dinner as well. They're so active that I think they need it.

silverfrog Mon 25-Mar-13 18:18:04

mine have a hot lunch (dd1 takes hers with her in a flask, dd2 has school dinners) and then a hot tea too.

they both seem to need it, and are quite hungry if they only have sandwiches. plus I don't like the monotony of sandwich fillings, or jacket potato/beans on toast - it's a lot of same-y food.

tbh, even my 8 month old has 2 hot/cooked meals a day. I couldn't imagine giving a sandwich type meal every day to a growing child.

we get in from school runs at 4.30pm at the earliest (dd1 and dd2 are at school 16 miles apart). sometimes, if dd2 has a club on, it's as late as 5.30pm.

I get on with cooking tea as soon as I get in, and dd2 sits with me and does her reading if she has any. dd1 does some work on her ipad at this point (she has SN, so doesn't have homework as such, but does do some reading/maths work on her ipad).

we sit down to eat at about 5.30-6pm (depending on what time we get in) - I say 'we', but really mean 'they' as I eat with dh later. after eating we do any other homeowrk dd2 might have (spellings, writing, topic work etc), and then off up to bed.

they are in bed by 7.30pm usually.

dd1 is 8 and dd2 is 6, so not that different age wise.

OldBeanbagz Mon 25-Mar-13 18:23:09

Mine have a cooked lunch at school every day. There's normally a cooked pudding but they both prefer the fruit option.

At home they get a cooked dinner followed by yoghurt or fruit. We eat at 6.30-7pm so it's a long time since their lunch at Midday.

Some days they even have a snack when they get in from school to keep them going but i know that they're both 'little and often' eaters so aren't being over-fed (DS is actually off the bottom of the centile chart!).

Wishihadabs Mon 25-Mar-13 18:25:30

At the moment they often have 2 hot meals as its ffreezing. But often something simple e.g. soup, pizza, macaroni cheese, fish fingers. In the summer we often have a cold evening meal, but then they have sandwiches at lunch more often too.

Wishihadabs Mon 25-Mar-13 18:29:59

Often word of the day then .

sjupes Mon 25-Mar-13 18:35:02

Dd is 8 and almost always has a hot tea - it's only if i'm feeling ill that she ends up with sausage rolls and beans/beans on toast/a sandwich.

I don't enjoy cooking but it's how i was raised so i'm used to it.

Gales Mon 25-Mar-13 18:45:09

I work in a school. Looking at the menu e.g. pasta bake, roast dinner, chicken casserole, I would give "lunch" at tea time, something like sandwiches or egg on toast.

However, having seen what they actually get at school they really do need a dinner when they get home IMO. What's served at school is really not an adequate main meal, I don't care how many guidelines it meets, it's just not sad

EggBasket Mon 25-Mar-13 18:53:07

Mine have sandwiches or similar for lunch most days but when they do have a hot lunch, I usually do something light like muffins/crumpets/cheese on toast. They don't have the appetite for two hot meals a day so it would be a waste of food and effort!

OP, sounds like what you're doing is fine. If they're anything like my boys, they'll soon let you know if they're feeling underfed!

MintyyAeroEgg Mon 25-Mar-13 18:55:14

I give mine a "proper" hot meal.

prettymum Mon 25-Mar-13 18:59:24

My 8 and 6yr old have hot dinners in the evenings aswell as hot meal at school, we eat around 5.30pm- 6pm and bedtime is at 8pm.

disorganisedmummy Mon 25-Mar-13 19:03:10

Ok there does seem to be lots of differing opinions here.The kinds of things they have for lunch are roast dinner on a wednesday,fish & chips on fri,lasagne or other pasta on mondays-you get the idea.Some days they will have a bigger tea like pasta & pesto.I tend to be guided by them a bit as they don't always want another big meal.Sorry to be anal,I'm always worrying if I'm doing it right.

Gales Mon 25-Mar-13 19:15:10

Yes that's exactly what I mean disorganised. The menu sounds great, but the reality is that the lasagne will be a small portion and mostly pasta, hardly any meat, roast will be one small slice of (possibly processed) meat and 2 small potatoes, fish and chips actually means a couple of cheap fish fingers or minced fish in batter.

The portions are small and the quality poor, it's not an adequate main meal, unless your experience is different and your children genuinely aren't hungry for dinner in the evening.

AnameIcouldnotthinkof Mon 25-Mar-13 19:18:51

Mine usually have a jacket potato or omelettes or a little bit of what me and DH are having i.e a smaller portion of rice and curry or pasta bake and then a yogurt or some fruit afterwards (or treat if it's fridays)
Our school lunches aren't bad depending on what they are serving.
DCs get in at about 3:30 and we have tea between 5 and 5:30 then they either go to an activity or chill until bed (My 5 and 6 year olds go to bed at 8pm and my 8 year old goes at 8:20pm)
If they want something when they get in they have some apple,orange or bannana pieces and some juice. When it's cold they have hot chocolate when it is warm they have ice pops.
It sounds like what your going is fine and I am sure they will tell you if they want food. Mine bloody do

Cakecrumbsinmybra Mon 25-Mar-13 19:21:38

DS1 has school lunch maybe twice a week, and I don't treat those days any differently - I still give him a normal cooked tea. Not sure what timing has to do with it, surely you have time for dinner if you're not doing after school clubs etc? We even have a hot dinner on the night we get back from swimming at 5.20. They still go to bed at 7. If you're sure they're getting everything they need though, then I'm sure it's fine - do they have fruit, protein etc with their sandwich teas?

CMOTDibbler Mon 25-Mar-13 19:22:26

I don't cook for ds in the evening - his school dinners are plentiful and nutritious, so a sandwich or something else is fine

missorinoco Mon 25-Mar-13 19:24:57

I mainly do beans on toast/soup/sandwiches, and just keep going with it if my (Y1) child is hungry.

I read the menu, and there were a few options that made me grimace, so I also suggested if he hadn't liked what was on offer he should tell me and I would make sure there was a bigger tea. There was some kind of a as-long-as-it's-not-something-you-normally-like type disclaimer in there from me.

IsabelleRinging Mon 25-Mar-13 19:33:16

My dd has a school dinner, but seeing as I am cooking a proper dinner for DH and I in the evening she has same as us, which is usually pasta, pork chops and veg and potatoes, stir fry, fish and chips and peas, casserole, chicken breasts with vegetables and rice, risotto, etc etc depending on this weeks menu. School dinners are ok, and better than a packed lunch, but I also like to make sure she has had her 5 a day, and a cooked meal in the evening is the easiest way to do this as I can't gaurantee that she has eaten all her school dinner or chosen a balanced meal.

bigTillyMint Mon 25-Mar-13 19:36:10

When mine had school dinners, they generally had a cooked tea in the evening too. I don't think it matters if you do a more snacky tea though, as long as it is fairly balanced.

snoworneahva Mon 25-Mar-13 19:46:40

gales that's my experience too, the menu sounds great, pictures look lovely, interesting even but when you get an eyeful of what they actually get - I was quite surprised and not in a good way!

Taffeta Mon 25-Mar-13 21:20:30

I pondered this recently as mine have always had packed lunch p until last Autumn, when they switched to school dinners.

I thought I could give them a sandwich and it'd be OK as they had had a hot lunch. They thought I was insane. "Thanks Mummy. When's proper dinner?"

The nice thing about school dinners is that I don't feel as obliged, so once or twice in the week they will have dippy eggs or a bowl of rice and peas instead of a full on is pie or something. As a special treat as well once a month or so I do a high tea with sandwiches and scones, cut up fruit and stuff.

Taffeta Mon 25-Mar-13 21:21:08

Fish pie. Not is pie.

Zatopek Mon 25-Mar-13 21:32:17

My DD is in reception and eats like a sparrow.

She has school dinners a couple of times a week(I imagine the portions would be massive for her) but everyday regardless of whether she has school dinner or pack lunch, she is too tired to eat much at teatime.

She usually needs a snack to get her home so I will give her a muffin or cereal bar and a small smoothie but once home she is normally lounging on the sofa until bedtime and whether I make toast or pasta she will just pick at it. I tend to offer picnic teas (toast, cubes of cheese and fruit) or a softboiled egg with lots of fruit and a yoghurt and she will pick at these.

When I have tried to offer something more substantial it has ended up largely untouched.

If I feel she hasn't had much I will offer a low sugar cereal at bedtime and often she will eat a small bowl then.

JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 26-Mar-13 10:28:47

Mine usually have school dinners and then a hot meal in the evening. It never occurred to me to do anything else. I'm cooking for me and DH, why would I do anything different for them? Both are active and both are growing, I feel they need it. Like others have said, I wouldn't be happy with a sandwich and a yoghurt before 12 hours sleep, but then I like my food! smile

mindingalongtime Tue 26-Mar-13 16:26:54

The portions really are very small; although seconds are supposed to be available for those need it, they rarely are. I have seen the guidelines on what is the minimum acceptable and Teachers portions would just about fill up a junior child.

Soe are good, my DC's school cooked their own bread and biscuits and the veg were beautiful, but at a school where I was a governor, I always declined to stay for lunch!

My minded children get 2 cooked meals a day, the evening one is lighter, but still a good sized portion of home cooked food.

Oblomov Tue 26-Mar-13 16:35:47

We have a hot dinner - spag bol, roast, curry, chilli, chicken and steamed veg etc.
Mty 2 are ravenous and I don't beleive the dinner portions are that big. Besides dh and I like to eat a proper meal so we all eat together at 6pm. They have a snack when they come home from school and then we all eat a proper dinner together.

MilkRunningOutAgain Tue 26-Mar-13 19:39:09

Mine get a hot evening meal on the days I pick them up for school . On the days they are at their childminders they get a "light tea" which might be soup, fruit, sandwiches, occasionally pizza. The childminder's tea isn't enough, they need a big supper when we get back home. Problem is the other minded kids manage perfectly well with just the light tea, so the childminder isn't going to start doing a hot meal just for my 2. Kids vary a lot, mine eat loads, some eat very little.

JiltedJohnsJulie Wed 27-Mar-13 13:11:55

Seconds are only available to year 6 at our school.

disorganisedmummy Wed 27-Mar-13 13:33:54

Thanks for all your messages.I think I've got in a rut to be honest of doing the easiest option,sarnies.I think I need to make more effort with dinners.

Mine still have a main meal every day except Fridays when they have fish and chips at school and I know they will have both cleared their plates. Mine are often starving after a school dinner, bread and butter and sponge pud!

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