Ontario Dietitians in Public Health (ODPH) recognizes the essential roles that child care settings play in supporting children's growth and development, health, and well-being.
A supportive nutrition environment is one that encourages and facilitates positive relationship with food. It provides a nurturing space where children have:
- access to age-appropriate food at regular times
- a safe and encouraging eating atmosphere
- opportunities to explore and try new foods
- the ability to listen to their hunger and fullness cues
Child Care Menu Planning - Practical Guide
The Practical Guide includes information for child care providers on:• menu planning
• foods and beverages
• amounts to prepare
• sample menu.
Nurturing Children through Responsive Feeding - Coming Soon!
This resource describes how educators can nurture children in their care through responsive feeding practices and role modeling.
Physical and Social Environment
There are many guidelines or policies that child care settings can adopt to encourage a supportive nutrition environment for children in their care. See additional resources for a variety of sample policies.
Paint Your Plate with Vegetables and Fruit
Paint Your Plate offers practical ways to make it easier for children to enjoy vegetables and fruit:
• sample policies
• seasonal menus
• fun activities
• factsheets to share with families.
Needs Assessment Report
ODPH has taken the feedback from our engagement with over 800 child care educators across Ontario and updates our resources to better meet your needs. For more information on our needs assessment completed in 2020, click here.
These resources may be used and reproduced without permission for non-commercial purposes, provided that the appropriate credit is given to ODPH, the material remains in context, and is not altered in any way.
ODPH does not have print copies available. Please contact your local health unit, as some may have print copies available to child care providers in their regions.