provide lunch/tea?
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  1. #1
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    Default provide lunch/tea?

    I ask parents to provide their childs lunch when with me and i provide snacks and drinks. 7 years ago i did provide lunch and found it a pain as food would get wasted or they didn't like it and i found a lot of time was taken away from the children whilst i was cooking/ preparing.Since then i've found parents dont have a problem providing lunch and i always offer to heat up anything for a short time,but yesterday i had a visit from a mum intersted in a place for her two children and she was amazed when i said to provide the lunches.She was so used to having the lunch and tea provided at her daughters nursery that she instantly thought allChildminders provides everything. No child has ever needed tea with me as they have it a home and are gone from.mine by 5.45, so they just have a late afternoon snack.This mum was most concerned her children wouldnt have tea at mine as she needed till 6pm for childcare,& said they go to bed at 7 pm. I explained that she can provide tea but i said that i am back & forth to my front door seeing children out once back from school,& that my kitchen would have to have certain things in place if cooking (food hygiene rating etc) & its not what i want. I wonder if mum just wants a easy life with no thought to whats involved with us having to provide lunch/tea. I may have put her off but thats 1 parent in a few yrs who didnt appear to like my response! I'm not changing anything though as i'm happy doing it my way! The mum pays more at the nursery than any of the other local nuseries,but she said everything is included for that. (i'm talking £8-10 more per day)
    Last edited by Snowwhite; 14-02-2014 at 05:33 PM.

  2. #2
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    I provide a lunch, not cooked as I prefer us all to sit around the dining room table and eat the same food, as a home from home feeling.
    I don't provide an evening meal, I have in my policy that if they are still here at 6.45 for any reason then I am happy that they share our evening meal. Like you, I think children should eat their evening meal at home as a family.
    I think that the children of this prospective parent must hardly see their mum, with that tight turn around from pick up to bedtime, I am curious as to why is she looking for a childminder and not staying at the nursery?

    My environmental health officer said that if you open a packet of something and put it on a plate then you need to register. Her advice to me was all childminders should register because invariably they offer a cut up piece of fruit or biscuits even if they don't technically provide lunch or tea. So it might be wise to check with your local office if you are ok not to register.

  3. #3
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    I provide lunch but so far have had no mindees stay past 5pm so I do an after school snack but not tea. If I'm honest I don't want to work later than 5 or maybe 5.30 at a push anyway so it wouldn't be something I would offer unless there were exceptional circumstances. I have done tea for two mindees when their parents knew in advance they would be late due to a hospital appointment for a very sick grandparent and because I wasn't to give them one less ing to worry about that day. Also I fed one mindee yesterday - she was due to leave at 5 but I needed to drop my daughter back at school by 5.30 so I knew I would either have to feed mine and not her or at e very least make her sit here smelling the food cooking (she's always starving after school!) so I text mum in advance and asked if she'd like to have tea here. I wouldn't want to do it every day though.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by FloraDora View Post
    I provide a lunch, not cooked as I prefer us all to sit around the dining room table and eat the same food, as a home from home feeling.
    I don't provide an evening meal, I have in my policy that if they are still here at 6.45 for any reason then I am happy that they share our evening meal. Like you, I think children should eat their evening meal at home as a family.
    I think that the children of this prospective parent must hardly see their mum, with that tight turn around from pick up to bedtime, I am curious as to why is she looking for a childminder and not staying at the nursery?

    My environmental health officer said that if you open a packet of something and put it on a plate then you need to register. Her advice to me was all childminders should register because invariably they offer a cut up piece of fruit or biscuits even if they don't technically provide lunch or tea. So it might be wise to check with your local office if you are ok not to register.
    I am registered with enviromental health and the inspector said to contact her if i decided to provide meals and then she'd inspect me again and i' d be graded (no thanks is my answer!)
    I also think evening meals should be family time,but i guess in this day and age its not always possible
    I actually thought the same as you in that the parents couldn't have spent much time with their daughter before she went to bed.Although mum may have worked part time (didn't ask) so then i guess she got the time back then with her daughter. Mum has had her 2nd baby and is on a yr's maternity leave,& this September her oldest daughter is due to start nursery school every day,& as that is for 2.5 hours the nursery her daughter was in wont do wrap around care, hence a Childminder. Mum left mine with a lot to think about in regards to the differences between a nursery and a CM.
    I actually prefer to only work till 5.30/5.45 but if anyone does ask for 6pm then i try to not turn them down. The mum wanted 3 days a week and not until September but she wanted to start looking now for a Childminder incase we fill up.I guess with her looking now will also give her time to digest all the diferences!
    Last edited by Snowwhite; 14-02-2014 at 07:22 PM.

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  6. #5
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    Yes I'm registered too and because I don't provide hot meals was able to have a chat over the phone and send in copy of Food. Hygiene training certificate. If I ever change I also have to tell em so that I can be graded but it is not something I intend to do. Mealtimes are family time for my children who are still fairly young - they still need me (and are still getting used to me working after having me to themselves all their lives) so it's important for my family not to work too late. Of course later care is needed by many people and is such a valuable offering from a childminder who can do it. It's just not for me at the moment. I take my hat off to those of you that have any energy left at that time of day

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    I provide all meals as I like the children to all eat the same healthy meals.

    My children are 8 & 11. The 8 yr old usually eats tea with everyone, depends what my 11 yr old is up to. We have tea 4.30/4.45.

    There is another thread about wasting or not wasting food. I don't have a problem with wasting food as I only give small portions and know what they do and don't eat. I don't 'do' fussy children!

    I'm registered with environmental health but they just send me a form to fill in and even though I cook from scratch they don't visit me.

    I've been in childcare for 25yrs and it is just part of my routine to prep and cook meals.

  8. #7
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    I don't provide lunch or dinner. Only snacks and drinks too. Haven't had any complaints about it yet. Sometimes if I have after school ones they just bring an extra lunchbox for tea.
    I'm not going to provide lunch or dinner either. It would take a lot out of my day and to be honest I don't want to cook and prepare lunch and tea for everyone. It's just another thing to worry about

  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by bunnyjess View Post
    I don't provide lunch or dinner. Only snacks and drinks too. Haven't had any complaints about it yet. Sometimes if I have after school ones they just bring an extra lunchbox for tea.
    I'm not going to provide lunch or dinner either. It would take a lot out of my day and to be honest I don't want to cook and prepare lunch and tea for everyone. It's just another thing to worry about
    My thoughts exactly bunnyjess!

  10. #9
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    When I set out as becoming a CM I automatically assumed I would be providing lunch and/or dinner depending on the times. I plan on being open 7am-6pm so may even need to provide breakfast. However I have found out the majority of CMs on the Island get the parents to bring in lunchboxes and just do dinner after hours.

    My current idea is to provide breakfast if needed, to provide lunch if required, but welcome packed lunches being brought from home, and if children are in my home after 5pm they will be provided with dinner as I can't make my kids wait later than that. I shall have a healthy eating policy in place, I'm strict with my own kids so any crisps etc will be removed til collection time.

    I'm happy to make lunch as I will need to do something for myself and my daughter, but think some parents prefer packed lunches. well, we'll see. I'm very up in the air about it, unsure what is the best option. I can't feasibly provide that amount of food without extra fees in place, maybe a pound for lunch, two pound for dinner, I hate the thought of charging breakfast but my husband says as a businesswoman it will be bad practice not to, think my idea is they're little and probably won't eat more than a small bowl of cereal and a piece of toast - He thinks parents will abuse a free meal and not bother feeding their child even if they can :-/ but a quid for breakfast seems unfair!

  11. #10
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    I provide light lunch and cooked dinner. I chose to do this as my own children get hungry after school and would struggle to wait until after 6pm for their dinner, so I need to cook for them anyway. As someone said the under 7s are now getting a hot meal at school so a larger lunch and a light tea may be a good option. I have pondered this...I personally don't fancy the arguments that may occur with pack lunches from home, not just the children but with the parents aswell. This way everyone has the same. Good luck whatever you decide, just do what you think will work best for you :-)

 

 

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