On Thursday, March 8, 2018 at 9:15 a.m., thousands of Marylanders participated in Hear the Maryland Crunch! Students, teachers, legislators, and community members all bit into a juicy apple and joined this state-wide synchronized apple crunch event!
Held during National School Breakfast Week, Hear the Maryland Crunch! highlighted the importance of the School Breakfast Program in ensuring that all children get a healthy start to their day.
The Importance of School Breakfast
Students perform better in school, are less likely to be overweight, and are less likely to be absent from or late to school. Learn more about the research that underscores the importance of Breakfast for Learning and Breakfast for Health.
Creating Healthier Students and Better Learners With the School Breakfast Program, measures progress in ensuring that all of the nearly 400,000 low-income students in the state have access to a nutritious school breakfast so they can start the day ready to learn. The report includes details about how well the schools in your community are doing in ensuring that all low-income students have access to the School Breakfast Program.
Resources to Help Celebrate Hear the Maryland Crunch!
Check out these resources to help schools and groups participate in Hear the Maryland Crunch, including posters, breakfast bingo game, coloring contest, and scripts to read during morning announcements and before the big crunch.
A free one hour lesson plan, “The Maryland Hunger Gap” was developed in partnership with Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future. It includes a detailed lesson plan, PowerPoint slides, additional resources, and a student handout. As part of the lesson plan, students will consider how to define hunger and food insecurity, explore interventions designed to improve food security, and take a stand on the merits of expanding universal school breakfast programs.
The Maryland Hunger Gap provides important context and background for participation in Hear the Maryland Crunch! — an event to help raise awareness of the role school breakfast plays in helping improve access to healthy food.
Let’s Make Sure All Students Have Access to School Breakfast!
Unfortunately, the majority of low-income students in Maryland do not participate in the school breakfast program. Increasing access to school breakfast is a key strategy to reduce food insecurity and improve the health and education of Maryland’s children. Here’s how we can do that:
- Encourage schools to serve breakfast after the start of the school day to ensure that all students have access to it. Learn more.
- Email Governor Hogan to urge full funding for Maryland Meals for Achievement, the breakfast in the classroom program.
- See if your local schools are eligible to participate in Maryland Meals for Achievement — state funding for breakfast in the classroom, or the Community Eligibility Provision — federal funding that creates Hunger-Free Schools. (Check out the report card for your county to see a list of schools eligible for both programs.)
- Visit the Take Action page for more ways to get involved.
Hear the Maryland Crunch! in the News
- Marc Steiner Radio Show: Sound Bites: Hear the Maryland Crunch!
- School breakfast radio program on WYPR
- Video on food insecurity and Hear the Maryland Crunch!
- Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake on Hear the Maryland Crunch!
- U.S. Congressman Chris Van Hollen on Hear the Maryland Crunch!
- University of Maryland Extension Helps to “Crunch” Childhood Hunger
- Food Day Blog: Did You… Hear the Maryland Crunch?
- Capital Area Food Bank Blog: How Do You Like Them Apples?
- Public News Service: Maryland Day: Crunch Heard Around the State
- William Paca Elementary School press release, alert, and video
- Caroline County Public Schools page and article
- Harford County Schools
- Princess Anne Elementary School
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