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3.3 HEALTH SCIENCES, Nutrition, Dietetics
Purpose The provision of nutritious food to children in full day care pre-schools is essential to ensure adequate child growth and development. This paper outlines the development of a nutrition assessment tool (Scored Evaluation Form) for this setting, and describes the nutrition practice findings measured by this tool in full day child care in Ireland. Design / methodology / approach This study involved two phases: a comprehensive literature review carried out on each criterion in the Scored Evaluation Form (SEF) to ensure best practice; use of the SEF in full day care pre-schools to assess their nutrition practice. Findings Use of the SEF demonstrated that portion sizes provided to infants and toddlers were inadequate. Poor provision of iron containing, vegetable and dairy foods was noted, as were poor meal time practices. The phrasing of certain criteria needs modification to avoid misinterpretation of portion size. Research limitations / implications With small modifications to clarify the portion size provided, the SEF can be used in the pre-school setting to ascertain nutrition practice. Practical implications The SEF requires testing to determine its utility as an intervention tool whereby its use may lead to positive changes in nutrition practice in the pre-school setting. Originality / value This paper outlines the development of a nutrition practice assessment tool for the full day child care setting in Ireland and describes previously unknown data gathered using this tool
Johnston Molloy, C., Corish, C., Kearney, J., Hayes, N. & Glennon Slattery, C. (2011) Developing a nutrition assessment tool for Irish pre-schools. Nutrition & Food Science Vol. 41, pp.44-53.