September 21, 2012 6:12 am
In fact, new research reveals that more than three quarters (77%) of teachers have given food to a student they thought was hungry. This startling number reinforces that even though parents may think their kids are fine when they leave the house without eating, the effects of skipping breakfast kick-in an hour into the school day - leading teachers to take measures to cope.
Canada's Breakfast Report, a study of Canadian moms and teachers, shows big discrepancies between what parents think and say about breakfast and what teachers are seeing at school. Only 7% of moms claim that, they have let their children go to school at least once a week without eating breakfast. Conversely, teachers believe that number is actually four times higher (29%) based on the behavior of kids in the classroom. Critically, more than half of teachers (56%) believe poor grades can be related to children not eating the breakfast they should each day.
Though parents are struggling to overcome some barriers, experts say it's crucial that they make it a priority to get their children back to the breakfast table.
"Spending the time as a family to eat breakfast is like putting money in people's physical, mental and emotional banks," says developmental psychologist Dr. Tony Volk. "Not eating breakfast goes beyond the food itself - it can impact a child's ability to concentrate which affects their grades, behavior and ability to socialize."
The good news is that when children come to school after eating a balanced breakfast, teachers see encouraging results:
• 82% of teachers agree that breakfast improves a student's capacity to learn;
• 62% see an ability to retain learning;
• 69% say it improves a student's ability or willingness to interact with other students.
The report also shows that two-thirds (66%) of moms agree that ideas for making breakfast more fun could help their family eat breakfast more frequently. Moms cited a number of ways that breakfast could be more fun including; changing up routines, listening to music and trying new and fun foods.
Published with permission from RISMedia.