The food our children eat affects every aspect of their lives: their mood, behaviour, growth, even their ability to concentrate. Good nutrition is vital to a child's health from building strong bones and teeth to the healthy development of internal organs and general growth.

Rainbow Smiles approach is to ensure a balanced healthy diet for children. As such the menu is structured to ensure a wide variety of foodstuff is served throughout the course of the day, in order to meet their daily nutritional requirements. As such there is a strong emphasis in providing a large variety of  fresh fruit and vegetables, as well as bias towards different types of fish dishes, which are healthier and easier to digest for young children, as opposed to meat and chicken dishes, which are served mainly once a week. With none of our meals containing fried food.

All meals are cooked daily mainly using fresh ingredients, and very rarely serving pre-made items such as fish fingers. This commitment is perfectly demonstrated as the Chef makes items such as Bread, Baked Beans and much more himself. This provides the additional benefit of ensuring that we are in total control of the ingredients used.

Children given high sugar content foods can become less focused and experience mood swings. When they are given a balanced diet they become more eager to learn, appear happier and sleep better. We limit the sugar and salt content in all our recipes. We are committed to using quality products that are low in 'E' numbers, salt and sugar.

The menu is also Multi-cultural in nature. This has numerous benefits such as:

  • Enables the Nursery to provide a wide variety of healthy meals, which can also be used to reflect the Multi-cultural make up of the children and staff within the Nursery.
  • Introduce a wide variety of ingredients, and therefore different flavours to the children. This is especially important at a young age, when their palate is also developing that we expose them to a wide range of healthy food items.

Snacks again are varied and diverse and range from a wide variety of Fresh Fruit and Vegetable to freshly baked cakes and biscuits accompanied with Milk. However the key emphasis on snacks is to ensure they are nutritional and light in order that they do not detract from the main meals.

Breakfast is mainly based around healthy cereals, Toast, and Milk, which keep in line with the Nursery theme of healthy eating.

Meals and snack times play an important part in the development of the children at Rainbow Smiles. Within the setting the approach is to reinforce and further develop skills that have been introduced from preceding areas, e.g. Pre-School will continue and further develop the personal hygiene focus that was introduced in the Toddler area, where the children learn to wash their hands before a meal, and wash their hands and face after a meal.

As mealtimes are a group activity, it provides the practitioners with opportunities to further develop social skill, e.g. teaching manners. This approach is consistent throughout the whole of the setting, with each area of the nursery focussing on its own developmental goals for the children. Hence within the ground floor there is no differentiation between the process of snack and meal times, however, there is a difference in focus between the baby and toddler area. The objective within the baby area is to integrate them into a group environment, whereas the toddler area concentrates on developing their social skills.

Mealtimes also provide a perfect opportunity to develop the children’s own sense of independence, as within the Toddler area, the children are encouraged to self-feed. This process is then further developed in Pre-School by encouraging the children to self-serve as well as undertake additional tasks, e.g. buttering their own bread. Children’s independence is further developed within Pre-School as snack time is a free flow process, which allows the child to decide whether they would like a snack. Quite often the children will also learn to wait their turn, as snacks are not served as formally as meals are.

Both meal and snack times are used as an opportunity to develop the children’s language. Within the Toddler area Nursery Rhymes are regularly sung as a group to keep the children occupied, whilst the meal is being served. This also provides the opportunity for children to express themselves as they are encouraged to carry out the actions to the rhymes. Reading stories are used as an alternative to singing, as it provides a means in which to capture the children’s attention and develop their language.

Within the Pre-School area the emphasis is much more on talking about the meal itself, thereby developing the children’s vocabulary, whilst also extending their knowledge. Name cards at the dining tables help the Pre-Schoolers with their literacy development.

Contact details


117 Rosendale Road
SE21 8HE

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Phone Number

020 8655 7888

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