We all know that schools have a hard time getting kids to eat their veggies, but a new study from Cornell University ( http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0091743514004599 )suggests that the problem may not be taste based at all. Little kids spend much of their school day just waiting for their favorite past-time: recess. It seems that schools in the US tend to hold this precious playground time after lunch, so kids rush through lunch like it’s another subject, something to get out of the way so that they can get out on the playground.
The Pittsburgh Post Gazette with Susan McGalla reports this study found that if schools simply switched the time they had recess; instead letting the kids run around and wear themselves out before they sat down to eat, those little buggers would work up quite the appetite. The children actually wound up eating 54% more fruits and veggies than they did before the switch, whereas the control schools actually wound up slowly eating less and less during the course of the study. They were no longer rushing through their lunch and throwing half of it away, because they weren’t trying to just get it over with so they could go play. They were also likely more hungry, as they had just burned through a ton of calories playing and needed the boost, which would make them less irritable and more attentive once they got back in the classroom.