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  • 1.
    Berggren, Linda
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Food and Nutrition.
    Talvia, Sanna
    Fossgard, Eldbjørg
    Björk Arnfjörð, Unnur
    Hörnell, Agneta
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Food and Nutrition.
    Ólafsdóttir, Anna Sigríður
    Gunnarsdóttir, Ingibjörg
    Wergedahl, Hege
    Lagström, Hanna
    Waling, Maria
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Food and Nutrition.
    Olsson, Cecilia
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Food and Nutrition.
    Nordic children's conceptualizations of healthy eating in relation to school lunch2017In: Health Education, ISSN 0965-4283, E-ISSN 1758-714X, Vol. 117, no 2, p. 130-147Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose: Pupils' perspective should be better taken into account when developing nutrition education at school. The purpose of this paper is to explore Nordic children's perspectives on the healthiness of meals in the context of school lunches.

    Design/methodology/approach: In total, 78 focus group discussions were conducted with 10-11-year-old girls and boys (n=457) from schools in Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, which were participating in the Nordic school meal project ProMeal during the school year 2013-2014. A flexible discussion guide and stimulus material in the form of 14 photographs displaying different school lunch contexts were used. The discussions were analyzed using thematic analysis.

    Findings: These Nordic children seem to share the adult-set aim of healthy eating in the school context as a socio-cultural norm. Although healthy eating was constructed as a rational, normative and acceptable way to eat at school, unhealthy eating was emphasized as negotiably acceptable when eaten occasionally and under certain circumstances (e.g. at special occasions). Unhealthy eating also comprised emotionally laden descriptions such as enjoyment and disgust.

    Practical implications: Children's conceptualizations of healthy eating are connected to nutritional, socio-cultural, emotional and normative dimensions, which should be reflected also when developing nutrition education in school.

    Originality/value: The need for research exploring children's experiences of, and understandings about, school lunch motivated this unique multicenter study with a large number of participating children. In the focus groups a child-oriented, photo-elicitation method was used.

  • 2.
    Waling, Maria
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Food and Nutrition.
    Olsson, Cecilia
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Food and Nutrition.
    School lunch as a break or an educational activity: a quantitative study of Swedish teacher perspectives2017In: Health Education, ISSN 0965-4283, E-ISSN 1758-714X, Vol. 117, no 6, p. 540-550Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose – The purpose of this paper is twofold: first, to explore to what extent teachers eat together withpupils during school lunches and their attitudes toward using these lunches to reach the educational goalsstated in the Swedish compulsory school curriculum; and second, to study to what degree teachers seethemselves and school meal personnel as role models during school lunches.Design/methodology/approach – A questionnaire was completed by 3,629 teachers in Swedish schools.Findings – In total, 90 percent of the teachers ate lunch together with the pupils one or more days per week.The majority reported that meals were fully (54 percent), or partially (40 percent) subsidized when they wereeating with pupils. In total, 72 percent thought that school lunches should be considered part of the school’seducational activities while 28 percent thought that it should be a time to get a break from educationalactivities. Most teachers thought that school lunches could be useful for learning about the issues of foodwaste and healthy eating while there were more diverse views on using lunches for learningabout fundamental values. A majority of the teachers considered themselves to be role models in theschool meal situation.Practical implications – The authors suggest that the educational component of the schoolmeal per se shouldbe regulated in the Educational Act together with guidelines from the Swedish National Agency for Education.Originality/value – This study is unique since it covers a previously little studied area; teachers’ attitudestoward using the school lunch situation for educational purposes.

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