How can you expect a child to concentrate in class if their belly is rumbling from hunger? A concerning study was recently released in the UK which found that almost four out of five teachers in England and Wales reported that their students had been arriving hungry to class – having gone without breakfast.
Nearly 50% of teachers said some pupils arrived at school hungry at least three or four times a week. Around 20% said they had brought in food within the last 12 months for children who had not eaten breakfast, while 8% said they had also given pupils money for food.
Here are some other points from an article published on the topic:
- Nearly two-thirds of the teachers said they knew of children at their school who regularly ate nothing until lunchtime.
- The survey was conducted by the pollsters YouGov – on behalf of the breakfast cereal manufacturer Kellogg’s – and it asked a nationally representative sample of 765 heads, classroom and supply teachers at state and independent schools throughout England and Wales for their experiences, with many attributing pupils’ poor behaviour to hunger.
- Hungry pupils were more likely to be lethargic and unable to concentrate, the teachers reported, and half the teachers said they were also more likely to be disruptive. A majority agreed that hungry pupils caused problems for other children in their classroom and needed more attention.
Jill Rutter, head of policy at the Family and Childcare Trust, was quoted in the article as saying:
“Missing breakfast has a huge impact on children’s ability to concentrate, learn and behave, which affects their results and long-term outcomes. Governments in all parts of the UK now recognise that breakfast is essential to children’s learning. Despite these promising developments, there are too many children who still miss out.”
If you’re ever stuck for breakfast ideas for your kids, check out our recipe page or grab a copy of That Sugar Book which features Energising Egg Cupcakes and Zucchini and Pea Fritters.
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