Nutrition & Physical Activity

Mel's Lil Munchkins is a member of the Provider's Choice Food Program

Nutrition Policy:
a. Drinking water will be freely available for children at all times throughout the day.
b. Only Skim or 1% milk (plain or flavored) will be served to children over 2 years of age.
c. Juice will be limited, infrequent, if served at all limiting if served only 4-6oz or less per day for children and 100 percent juice will be served.
Mealtime Environment:
a. High-calorie, low nutrition foods (cakes, cookies, chips, candy, frozen treats, and other sweets will be served infrequently, if at all.
b. Whenever possible, provider will dine with the children to encourage them to eat a variety of foods and observe table manners.
c. Food will not be used as a basis for punishment, reward or incentive.
d. Children will be encouraged, but never forced, to eat.
Special Occasions:
a. For special celebrations and birthdays we will encourage parents to provide healthier options like fruits and vegetables or low fat baked goods instead of sugary treats.
b. Food brought from home must be approved prior to bringing into care. Outside food is not permitted otherwise and will be thrown or given back to the caretaker at drop off.

Physical Activity Policy

Screen Time Limitations:

  1. Children younger than one will not have any screen time (TV viewing, video games, computer time etc)
  2. Children over the age of one will be limited to screen time no more than 20 minutes per day prior to meal time only to allow provider to set meal table, clean hands and change diapers.
  3. Screen time will be educational in nature or actively engage the children in movement.
  4. Movie days will be limited to rare special occasions and planned activities.

Physical Activity Standards:

  1. Provider will interact with infants in daily physical activities that encourage active exploration of the environment.
  2. Children will engage in at least 60 minutes of structured/unstructured physical activity daily. Structured physical activity time will utilize evidence-base curriculum, such as “CATCH Early Childhood Physical Education” and others, on a regular basis. Our goal is 90 to 120 minutes per day however Minnesota weather, space constraints and children’s needs may hinder that amount of time give or take.
  3. Withholding structured physical activity time will not be used as a form of discipline unless safety is a concern.
  4. Children will not be sedentary for more than 60 minutes at a time except when sleeping.