Smart kids take to the kitchen and cook up a storm

CLEAN COOKING: Wyrallah Public School students Grace Mediero 11, of Tuckarimba, Lucinda Quinn 10, of Wyrallah, Ruby Quinn seven, of Wyrallah, and Drew Charlton, eight, of Tuckarimba, are excited to see their kitchen facilities upgraded.
CLEAN COOKING: Wyrallah Public School students Grace Mediero 11, of Tuckarimba, Lucinda Quinn 10, of Wyrallah, Ruby Quinn seven, of Wyrallah, and Drew Charlton, eight, of Tuckarimba, are excited to see their kitchen facilities upgraded. Marc Stapelberg

NO MORE pies and chips for these young ones.

Wyrallah Public School Year 2 student Ruby Quinn's favourite food is healthy burgers with beetroot, while school captain Grace Mediero loves pumpkin soup.

The kids have lately been throwing themselves into the healthy eating revolution with fortnightly Kids in the Kitchen cooking sessions.

Their dedication has just earned them a $5000 grant to upgrade the school kitchen, courtesy of the national Healthy Active Kids program run by Nestle and the Australia Institute of Sport.

Wyrallah Public was one of just five schools in Australia to win the grant from 1000 entries.

Principal Lisa Fahy said the money would help pay for a much-needed height-adjustable kitchen bench and a new oven and cook top.

The oven will help expand the school's cooking repertoire, adding baked treats like healthy quiches, muffins and scrolls to the menu.

The old bench is too high for younger students so the height-adjustable version would be most welcome too.

"Right now we do most of our cooking outside. There's a really nice element to that, but it doesn't comply with the health standards on a windy day," Ms Fahy said

"We'll be using the money to make it fully inclusive so kids from Kindergarten to Year 6 can all be actively involved."

The aim of the Kids in the Kitchen program is to teach kids to cook healthy food by themselves so as to empower them with an instinctive appreciation for healthy living, permanently.

"The skills they're learning here they can take with them in life," Ms Fahy said.

"We're firmly committed to making sure kids know how to make healthy choices."

And there's yummy benefits, too.

"Part of the joy of this program is they get to eat whatever they cook."

"We usually do two courses, for example a salad wrap and a fruit kebab.

"That's their most requested second course," she laughed.

The school is doing as many healthy eating and life

style projects as they can, for example they participated in Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution day and made a "rainbow wrap".

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