Breadcrumbs

Healthy eating resources for early childhood educators

The following resources can help you support and promote healthy eating (and physical activity) for children in various early childhood care settings, and for a range of issues: 

Early childhood educators

Get Up & Grow

Healthy Eating and Physical Activity for Early Childhood resources

Resources include:

  • director/coordinator book
  • staff and carer book
  • cooking for children book
  • family book
  • posters, brochures and stickers.

The Get Up & Grow resources are available in English and nine non-English languages.

For Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander childcare educators, families and carers - Resources include a staff handbook, brochures and posters.

Australian Dietary Guidelines and Infant Feeding Guidelines

The Australian Dietary Guidelines and Infant Feeding Guidelines

Resources include:

  • revised Australian Dietary Guidelines (2013) to include adults, children and teens (2 to 18 years)
  • revised Infant Feeding Guidelines (2012)
  • posters, brochures and booklets for the public
  • detailed information for health professionals and educators.

Munch, Play and Learn

Munch, Play and Learn video

Developed by SA Health dietitians and early childhood experts, this video is about the ‘how’ of feeding children. It outlines practical ways to make mealtimes a positive experience and promote good nutrition for children, particularly in early childhood education and care settings.

Munch Play and Learn is an excellent staff development activity that can be watched in discrete sections. It covers five main topics:

  • preparing for an engaging mealtime environment
  • carer provides, child decides
  • mealtime environment
  • food awareness activities
  • good nutrition at home.

Eat a Rainbow

Eat a Rainbow resources

Eat a Rainbow is a suite of downloadable resources for early childhood educators and primary school teachers to promote learning about the importance of eating a variety of fruit and vegetables to young children and their families. Resources include:

  • posters
  • teachers guides
  • program toolkit
  • flashcards
  • games
  • recipes.

Australia's Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines

Australia's Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines

These guidelines cover all life stages, including:

  • children 0 to 5 years
  • children 5 to 12 years
  • young people 13 to 17 years
  • adults 18 to 64 years
  • older Australians.

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Preschools and integrated centres

Department of Education and Childhood Development (DECD)

Nutrition, food and beverages, dietary requirements

Outlines policies and procedures as required under Regulation 168 and are to be used by all DECD preschool services for the purpose of compliance, assessment and rating. Note, policies and procedures are only available through the DECD intranet. 

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Family day care staff

Department of Education and Childhood Development

Food & Nutrition in DECD Family Day Care

Includes Healthy Food Choice policy and fact sheets to assist educators and parents in offering healthy food choices for children.

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Special dietary needs for medical reasons

General

Women's and Children's Health Network

Resources by the Women’s and Children’s Hospital on nutrition for the following medical conditions:

  • diabetes
  • food allergy
  • underweight/failure to thrive
  • carbohydrate intolerance
  • cystic fibrosis

Child and Youth Health

An A to Z list of topics on all matters relating to nutrition, including infant nutrition and healthy eating for the whole family. Includes some topics about health conditions requiring special dietary needs.

Children with a disability

Novita Children’s Services

Nutrition and dietetic services for children with a disability.

Food allergies and food intolerances

Food Standards Australia & New Zealand (FSANZ)

Information about food allergies, food intolerances and a Food allergen portal (resources) for child care centres and schools, consumers, food industry, and health professionals.

Allergy & Anaphylaxis Australia

Information and resources for people with allergies including food allergy. Also has the Approaching the management of anaphylaxis in schools/childcare resource. 

Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (ASCIA)

Information for schools and childcare, including

  • ASCIA anaphylaxis e-training for schools and childcare
  • guidelines for the prevention of anaphylaxis is schools, preschools and childcare
  • information for parents and school or childcare community

Smart phone apps

Various Australian smart phone apps are available that assist in identifying suitable food products for healthy menus and special dietary needs. Information functions include the allergen and ingredient lists for individual products, and dietary functions that identify if a product is suitable for special diets, such as Halal, Kosher, vegan, vegetarian, and more.

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Special dietary needs for cultural reasons

More than nutrition: Cultures and Cuisines from ethnically diverse regions

Designed for child care centres working with culturally and linguistically diverse communities. This resource is available in a variety of languages. 

This resource covers aspects of each culture including:

  • characteristics of the food eaten
  • common ingredients used in food preparation
  • how the food is traditionally served
  • food in relation to religious and special occasions.
  • recipes to promote fruit and vegetables and reflect the featured culture.

Smart phone apps

Various Australian smart phone apps are available that assist in identifying suitable food products for healthy menus and special dietary needs. Information functions include the allergen and ingredient lists for individual products, and dietary functions that identify if a product is suitable for special diets, such as Halal, Kosher, vegan, vegetarian, and more.

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General information for parents

Early childhood educators can use these webpages to direct parents to quality information about healthy eating and physical activity for their child or family.

SA Health

Healthy eating at different ages and stages

Helpful information, ideas, guidelines and tips about healthy eating for pregnancy and breastfeeding, babies and young children, and other life stages.

Munch, Play and Learn video

Developed by SA Health dietitians and early childhood experts, this video is about the ‘how’ of feeding children, outlining practical ways to make mealtimes a positive experience and promote good nutrition to children. Whilst designed for staff in early childhood education and care settings, it is equally valuable to parents and carers of young children. It covers five main topics:

  • preparing for an engaging mealtime environment
  • carer provides, child decides
  • mealtime environment
  • food awareness activities
  • good nutrition at home.

Be active at different ages and stages

Information, ideas, guidelines and tips about being active during pregnancy and breastfeeding and encouraging being active for babies and young children, and other life stages.

Child and Youth Health 

An A to Z list of topics on all matters relating to nutrition, including infant nutrition and healthy eating for the whole family.

What can I do as a parent to develop healthy learning?

Practical ideas for parents to give babies and young children a head start to being healthy.

Healthy recipes for families with young children

Healthy and affordable recipes suitable for families with young children. A range of free, hard copy recipe booklets are also available by completing the Health Promotion Community Education Resource Order Form (DOC xxKB)

Australian Dietary Guidelines and Infant Feeding Guidelines

The Australian Dietary Guidelines (2013) and Infant Feeding Guidelines (2012)

Resources include:

  • The revised Australian Dietary Guidelines and Infant Feeding Guidelines
  • posters, brochures and booklets for the public.

Australia's Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines

Australia's Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines

The Guidelines are for all life stages, including:

  • children 0 to 5 years
  • children 5 to 12 years
  • young people 13 to 17 years
  • adults 18 to 64 years
  • older Australians.

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