Zein: The importance of early childhood nutrition
Making sure children get the nutrition they need can be challenging for any parent – haven’t we all seen a piece of vegetable flying around the table when dinner is being served? A balanced and nutritious diet is crucial for the development and growth of children from an early age on.
Zein International Childcare offers a specialised approach to nutrition that includes qualified chefs in service at all day care locations, ensuring the children in their care are provided with freshly a prepared, nutritious breakfast, warm lunch and snacks throughout the day.
The impact of nutrition
An incredible number of scientific studies show correlations between nutrition and a child’s physical, emotional and cognitive growth. To be more specific, on a physical level a nutritious diet influences overall growth such as qualitative body development, body weight and height. But it also leads to an increased level of energy and thus an increased interest in learning. Therefore, having highly active children around six o’clock in the morning isn’t that bad at all when talking about health…
Working with qualified chefs
In recognition of the impact of nutrition on early learning experiences, Zein International Childcare was the first childcare provider in the Netherlands to introduce qualified chefs at their day care locations nearly ten years ago.
Having a chef working on-site is about so much more than serving healthy, freshly prepared meals throughout the day; their daily presence allows for close collaboration between the kitchen and the child’s teachers and parents in gently introducing a range of tastes, textures and culinary combinations - to develop good dietary habits to take with them into later childhood and beyond.
Zein chef Hakim, one of the former Sky Chefs for Gulf Air First Class, preparing a birthday cake
The expertise the chefs bring to the table is a true asset. Their extensive knowledge on the most important nutrients for children in the different age groups between 0 – 4 years old results in a varied menu inspired by the different worldly cuisines – allowing children to thrive in all areas of development and ensuring children with allergies and food intolerances enjoy equally healthy personalised meals.
In addition, the children even grow their own organic fruits and vegetables in the gardens - sometimes helping the chef prepare delicious snacks for them to enjoy. The harvesting and preparation of food - even in its most basic of forms - is a great example of how everyday tasks turn into a learning opportunity for the children.
And on top of that, the freshly prepared organic meals, made by the Zein chefs with seasonal ingredients supplied by Ekoplaza, provide the location with a delicious smell that will remind you of your grandmother’s kitchen!
Children even grow their own organic fruits and vegetables in the gardens
Come and taste the goodness
On Saturday 9 November, Zein will be presenting its services at the IamExpat Fair in The Hague. Stop by the booth, meet their chefs and try one of the delicious snacks they also make for the children in their care. The teachers will answer your questions in light of Zein’s pedagogic approach and their daily programme for children aged 3 months up to 12 years old – while your child enjoys the supervised activity zone set-up for them.
About Zein International Childcare
Unique in its growth in the childcare sector - Zein International Childcare is the leading provider of international childcare services in the Netherlands, offering Day Care, Pre-School, After School and Holiday Care across multiple locations in The Hague region.
Working both independently and in partnership with key international schools, Zein delivers a specially designed approach that focuses on the uniqueness of growing up in an internationally oriented environment.