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Halloween candy should be allowed in moderation. My students can bring a few pieces for snack, and this usually lasts only a couple of days. We have to let them be kids.
While health education is important it stands that educators and school aren't going to stop students from consuming sweet treats. My philosophy is to keep it out in the open, talk about it, and limit it to a small treat at the end of lunch. You run the risk of going too far and blowing the issue out of proportion. The bottom line is we must educate. The choice - whether it be in school or at home - isn't ours, but students and their parents.
As a kid, I took my haul from Halloween and kept it in a cupboard. My parents allowed me to take one item per night after eating dinner if I wanted. Since I hadn't collected enough to make it last all year if I had one every night, I rationed myself, usually ending up still having some at next Halloween.
Halloween candy can be used for a budgeting exercise in school. Taking it away is just a missed opportunity for math and life skills education.
Truth is, Halloween originated from when the Celtic people would dress up to celebrate the harvests at the end of the season before winter came. Along the way, dressing up obviously lost the reason for doing so and people think the reason is for evil reasons. There is no religion behind it, so for those whining about different religious backgrounds, your kids can politely decline while they watch others have fun dressing up and have fun with their friends at parties and get candy. Ease the heck up! Learn the actual history.
Exlaining is hard?? Try the truth--kids get it!
Again, no one is suggesting that kids should be denied candy - only that the school environment is not the place for it. Also, your point about "they buy what their classmates want" goes right to the crux .... Kids want candy regardless of how they are raised at home and will take that choice above others given the chance. It's a brain development issue - insufficient pre-frontal cortex development which studies are now indicating is not fully developed until very late teens or early twenties.
"Now back to Halloween candy. The surest way to make a child crave sweets and overindulge is to deny it to them. It is also the way to encourage the young entrepreneurs of the inner city school---the candy man/lady. They get a few dollars up and buy candy at a discount and sell it for full price out of their book bags. They don't buy fruit or vegetables. They buy what their classmates want. My own nephew would take part of his allowance to invest in his candy business at school.[/quote]
I think part of it, more than just the health issue, is that we have so many religions from different countries, with different beliefs, and we have to be respectful of those families who chose not to celebrate Halloween. It is really hard, especially in elem. school to explain to a student why everyone else in the class gets candy, but they don't.
So "elementary teacher" what you are saying is that we should subjugate our culture to appease and not offend another person's culture. Brilliant!
Instead of explaining cultural differences to children and using it as a teaching moment the PC police choose to just teach kids that differences are bad and should not be addressed or acknowledged out of fear. What you teaching them is: "because little Johnny is "X" we cant celebrate "Y" anymore". That is sure to foster good feelings toward anothers culture or religion
Yes we have to respect others culture and religious beliefs but to what end. These people of which you speak chose to come here and should be assimilating to our country to the best that their abilities and cultures will allow them to, not the other way around.
It's sad & you're sad.
We are moving into a time when Candy or Sweets as they say in England, are no longer what they used to be. Candy may consist of a range of products and chemical by-products, coloring, and other harmful substances, made up of flavoring , and has certainly never been near a sugar substance. A large proportion of these candy substitutes are probably harmful to the consumer, who is so very often a young child, and many of the side effects of the ingredients are unknown. As with many food products today there is a need for labelling, and some stricter control over what manufacturers are allowed to pass on to the public as same edible foo stuffs. My children eat candy, but my wife and I are careful about what is in the candy.
YES! and everything that has to do with Halloween. There is nothing educational about Halloween. Let's get rid of it.
I think you will find that the focus on food based holiday celebrations in schools is something which has exploded in the last 50 years or so. A survey of grandparents would elicit some interesting data. And my point is that the children get more than ample opportunity OUTSIDE of school and under their parents' guidance to partake of the fun stuff so it's not a case of banning any of the holidays. Can't the school do something not food related? For those of us who are trying to be responsible and teach our kids good nutrition, it is incredibly frustrating to have it undermined by the institution we attempt to have our kids hold up as a model. And while I am at it, so far this month, we have had a field trip to a bakery where the take home snack was, not an almost healthy pretzel but, yes, a donut. Halloween Bingo next week will have, yes, donuts for food. Halloween party next week will have candy. Pancake-for-lunch day next week will have some sort of high fructose corn syrup disguised as maple syrup. And this is aside from the suckers at the post office, local grocery store et al. It's a constant battle for those of us who are cognizant of the nutritional issues and really, we don't need the one place of true learning to be adding to the pressure. I totally agree that moderation is key and it is well practiced in the home. Seems not to be the case at school where they do, in fact, have a wellness policy and are guided by state mandates. Tragedy is that we leap from Halloween to Thanksgiving to Christmas to Valentine's Day to Easter and it's candy all the way. I am not sure that the definition of being American (which in fact I am) should be food.
"As Americans, we tend to use food during our celebrations - Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, etc. It is just something we seem to do, but we can teach our students moderation and/or how to consume healthy foods when enjoying others company. So I say yes to candy in moderation and yes to healthy snacks as an alternative. No to doing away with Halloween in schools altogether."