Thursday, November 10, 2011

School Lunches

I eat lunch at school every weekday, sometimes with the other teachers but more often with the students. It is a good way to practice English and learn more about them.

Known as
kyuushoku [給食], Japanese school lunches are mandatory meals served to all students between 4th and 5th period, around noon. The meal is specifically made to adhere to a certain set of guidelines concerning its content. It must be healthy and is prepared exactly the same way for all students, no exceptions. Each meal costs around 300 yen (roughly $3.50), and can add up to 5,000 yen (almost $60) per month.

An average school lunch comes with milk, miso soup, some sort of meat, a small salad, and a bowl of rice. The food is delivered by truck every day to each school, where it is then served by the students themselves, who alternate during any given month. No one is allowed to eat until the class leader gives the okay [by saying "itadakimasu" in Japanese, the equivalent of "grace" in English]. The students are taught to eat everything on their plate, and those who finish quickest are sometimes lucky enough to receive second helpings. The students then clean up all of their empty dishes and recycle their milk boxes.

Things to note: there is seldom any dessert besides a piece of fresh fruit, meat is perhaps the smallest portioned food, and all of the food is made fresh, daily. It's honestly the best meal I eat every day. Unless they're serving edamame. Yuck!

No comments:

Post a Comment