Have you ever tried to read a book when you were hungry? It is tough for us adults to concentrate and read when there is rumbling in our stomachs. Now, imagine an elementary school aged child trying to learn how to read or understand a new math concept on an empty stomach.
The chances of he or she being able to learn and focus is going to be reduced if there is nothing in their stomach. Numerous studies in the U.S., England, and other countries have shown there is a connection between eating a healthy breakfast and learning. Indeed, learning starts with breakfast.
Learning Starts with Breakfast
Eating breakfast has a direct impact on learning. A few benefits from The Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) are below: (read the full list)
- Children who eat breakfast show improved cognitive function, attention, and memory retention.
- After eating breakfast, students perform better on vocabulary and matching tests.
- Increased math scores on standardized tests.
- After eating school lunches, students show increased behavior and energy levels, which helps the learning environment.
- Serving school lunches in a classroom setting creates decreased levels of tardiness and behavior disruptions leading to more minutes of instruction time per day.
Eating a healthy breakfast can also help with childhood obesity, according to the FRAC, including lower Body Mass Index (BMI) levels and a lower probability of becoming overweight.
Easy Breakfast Ideas for Kids
Kids can be picky (adults too!) about eating breakfast. Here are a few resources to get your family eating a healthy breakfast regularly.
- 10 Easy Breakfast Ideas for Kids from RealSimple.com
- Quick Breakfast Ideas from FamilyFun.com
- Back to School: Quick and Easy Breakfast Ideas from MarthaStuart.com
- 25 Quick and Easy Kid Friendly Breakfast Ideas from Hitched.com
Parents, how do you ensure your child is eating a healthy breakfast? Teachers, do you let your students eat breakfast in the classroom?