A healthy cause for celebration in early learning services

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The Heart Foundation has published a new book Healthy Celebrations.

Healthy Celebrations aims to provide healthy alternatives for celebrating special occasions within early learning services. This colourful and practical guide explores ten special occasions and suggests ways to recognise and celebrate these with the child as the focus instead of the food. It also shares healthy recipes, creative ideas and inspiring stories from early learning services throughout New Zealand.

Research from the University of Auckland revealed almost half of the early learning services surveyed celebrated a special occasion monthly, with 7% of those celebrating every week[1].

Birthdays were the most common special occasion. Also popular, were national or cultural celebrations such as Easter, Diwali, Mothers’ Day and last days or farewells.

Unsurprisingly cupcakes or a cake were the most popular celebration food items, followed by biscuits, pies and sausage rolls. Only half the early learning services served fruit or vegetables at celebrations.


Download Healthy Celebrations: Ideas and recipes for early learning services

View vegetables.co.nz resources for education professionals


1 Growing up in New Zealand. Preliminary results from Kai Time in ECE.
More findings from the Kai Time in ECE survey can be found at www.growingup.co.nz/kai-time