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  • It’s lunchtime at Seaward, Dolphin Classroom.

    Some of the children have just come in from the playground pink-cheeked, others a little tired from the dancing session—and a lot hungry. Now it’s time to wash hands, head to the tables, take a seat, and wait patiently for lunch.

    What comes next looks nothing like the nursery lunches of the days of yore. In fact, the entire lunchtime routine is fascinating.  Together with their teacher the children choose two Busy Bee Helpers aka lunch assistants.

    They count the children and head to the kitchen door to greet the chef of the day and politely ask for the correct number of plates, cups and cutlery. And so it goes – back and forth, carrying bowls of food and serving spoons, water jugs and desserts, carefully delivering them to the tables where their friends and teachers are patiently waiting.

    Time to sit down for a meal. Every child will be scooping and serving themselves.

  • This midday ritual is more than just a meal. It is teaching children about healthy foods, encouraging independence, and introducing table manners.

  • “Daisy, can you help me pass out plates and cups to your friends today?” Daisy reaches for several colourful plates her teacher is handing her as she says, “Give one to each of your friends.” Daisy’s friends all respond with polite “thank you’s” as she hands out the plates—well, almost all of them. When one boy shouts out, “Hey, I don’t have one!” he receives a very gentle reminder from the teacher: “Please, may I have a plate.”

  • Once Daisy takes her seat, the teacher places towering bowls of whole-wheat pasta Alfredo, cooked broccoli and applesauce on the table before sitting down herself. A few children might need help spooning out the gooey pasta, but the sauce (which, to be honest, looks bound for a spill!), is passed by little hands without so much as a drop on the table.

  • Lest you missed the mention that these children are two and a half to four, here’s a reminder that some are still potty training or in nappies but they are adorable, and look like good friends who met for a decorous lunch date.

    Our family-style mealtimes teach manners, foster independence and provide empowerment around food. The children bond with their friends and teachers and have a profusion of foods to try as teachers tell children about their origins and benefits.

    Seaward children also love the social side of mealtimes. They are usually engrossed in such deep conversations as: “I’m using a spoon.” “Animals use their tongue and their mouths to eat.” “I like carrots, but you don’t like carrots.” 

    When lunch is over, everyone is putting the leftovers in a compost bin and the plates and cups in a bowl destined for the kitchen. The children help to wipe the tables and sweep the floor. Hands wiped, they are finding cosy spots to curl up in and nap listening to some quiet music. Isn’t that blissful?

  • Here’s a taste of our weekly menus:

  • Spring & Summer

  • Autumn & Winter

  • We are constantly encouraging our children to Give New Foods a Try and opening their minds to a world of flavours (and they are LOVING it).

    This isn’t to say that children revel in trying new foods at first sight (or bite). When we put buckwheat pancakes or lentil lasagne in front of the little gourmands, the reactions are a little mixed. But do they try it? You bet!

    This is why our menus feature these dishes alongside chickpea biryani and kale frittata. The adventurous dishes encourage even the fishfinger and chicken nugget crowd to open up to new experiences and flavours.

  • Bottom line: At Seaward, the learning doesn’t end at lunchtime.
    We approach the topic of nutrition as thoughtfully as we do phonics, the arts, or anything else we teach. We’re proud of that! It takes a bunch of caring adults to rear a healthy eater!

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    We are honored by the trust our families place in us every day by allowing us to teach and care for their children. We are proud of our community of dozens of families and teachers who share our goals and values of working together to help children meet and fulfill their potential.
  • Contact Us

    Our postal address and contact details
    • Address

      61 Seaward Avenue
      Dorset BH6 3SJ

    • Phone & E-mail

      Phone: 01202 424655

    • Opening Hours

      Monday – Friday
      8.30 am – 5.30 pm
      (Closed Weekends, Bank Holidays and for one week between Christmas and New Year)

    • Sessions

      Mornings, 8.30 am – 1.00 noon
      Afternoons, 1.00 pm – 5.30 pm
      School Day, 8.30 am – 3.30 pm
      Full Day, 8.30 am – 5.30 pm

    We offer Term Time or All Year Round attendance options.