National School Breakfast week was celebrated with new breakfast menu items and a Friday raffle at schools throughout Cherry Creek School District. New menu items include: an omelet, yogurt parfait (favorite of the students) and an English Muffin Breakfast Sandwich. It was my honor to participate in Cherry Creek’s activities through a breakfast visit to Holly Ridge Elementary.
Prior to breakfast beginning, my collegues and I had the opportunity to speak with Maria Magdaleno, the Kitchen Manager. Maria’s philosophy of her work is that children should be loved and respected; her job is more than food. Part of her meal program at Holly Ridge includes creating a warm environment for the children. This positive environment shines when the breakfast participation numbers show nearly 200 students eating breakfast in the cafeteria daily.
“I like being with my friends,” was one second grade boy’s answer when I asked what he liked about breakfast. His comment eludes to the comfort found in the Holly Ridge cafeteria. There wasn’t a rush or a harsh feeling to be found anywhere. With a choice to eat breakfast or play on the playground, most children at this school choose breakfast first with less playground time. That’s not the norm. It’s amazing how much one person, such as Maria, can affect so many by caring. Let us all remember to cherish and respect the children in our lives.