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Archive for Topic: 'Nutrition'

Join Us for Breakfast! Fresh Smoothies & Muffins

Your child is invited to join us for breakfast! On Thursday, Nov. 3, we will serve freshly blended orange-apple yogurt smoothies and blueberry-banana muffins baked at our very own bakery.

We serve breakfast at every school. Your child may join us 30 minutes before school starts for a delicious, nutritious start to the day. Breakfast is $1.70 for elementary students and $1.80 for junior high and high school students.

See what else we are serving up by calling your school or visiting

Topics: Nutrition

Summer Food Service Program Information

The West Des Moines Community Schools (WDMCS) Nutrition Services Department is working with West Des Moines Parks and Recreation and West Des Moines Human Services to offer a Summer Food Service Program from June 6 to Aug. 12, 2016. Meals will be provided to all children 18 years old or younger without charge; adults may pay $2 for breakfast or $3.50 for lunch. The meals will be provided Monday through Friday, on a first come, first served basis. All sites will be closed on July 4.

Two types of Summer Food Service Program sites are available: open and enrolled. Open sites are available to all children and families. Enrolled sites are available only to children who are enrolled in certain site-specific programs and meet the income guidelines for reduced-price meals in the National School Lunch Program.

Seven open sites will provide meals at the following times:

Open Sites

Crestview School of Inquiry. 8355 Franklin Ave., Clive Breakfast 7:45-9 a.m.
Lunch 11:15-12:15 a.m.
Meals served in the school cafeteria.
Hillside Elementary, 713 Eighth St., West Des Moines Breakfast: 7:45-8:45 a.m.
Lunch: 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.
Meals served in the school cafeteria.
Indian Hills Junior High, 9401 Indian Hills Drive, Clive Breakfast 9-9:30 a.m.
Lunch: 11-11:30 a.m.
Meals served in the school cafeteria.
Legion Park, corner of 4th Street and Vine Street, West Des Moines Lunch: noon to 1 p.m. Meals served under the park shelter.
Rex Mathes, 1401 Vine St., West Des Moines (June 6-July 15) Breakfast: 8-8:30 a.m.
Lunch: 11:15-11:30 a.m.
Meals served in the school cafeteria.
Stilwell Junior High, 1601 Vine St., West Des Moines (July 18-August 11) Breakfast: 8-8:30 a.m.
Lunch: 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.
Meals served in the school cafeteria.
Valley High School, 3650 Woodland Ave., West Des Moines, IA 50266 (closed August 12) Breakfast: 8-10:30 a.m.
Lunch: 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Meals served in the school cafeteria.

Two enrolled sites will provide meals at the following times:

Enrolled Sites

Champs/Mini Champs Program, Clive Learning Academy, 1600 73rd St., Windsor Heights (June 6-17, July 11-26) Lunch: 11-11:30 a.m. Meals will be served in the school cafeteria.
Chapel Ridge West Residents, Office at Chapel Ridge West, 210 S. 41st St., West Des Moines (June 6-August 12) Lunch: 11-11:30 a.m. Meals will be served in the school cafeteria.

At both open and enrolled sites, meals will be provided to all children without charge and are the same for all children regardless of race, color, national origin, sex, age or disability. There will be no discrimination in the course of the meal service.

To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027) found online at, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call 866-632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by:

  1. mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights 1400 Independence Avenue, SW Washington, D.C. 20250-9410;
  2. fax: 202-690-7442; or
  3. email:

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

Iowa Non-Discrimination Statement:
“It is the policy of this CNP provider not to discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or religion in its programs, activities, or employment practices as required by the Iowa Code section 216.6, 216.7, and 216.9.  If you have questions or grievances related to compliance with this policy by this CNP Provider, please contact the Iowa Civil Rights Commission, Grimes State Office building, 400 E. 14th St. Des Moines, IA 50319-1004; phone number 515-281-4121, 800-457-4416; website:”


Topics: Informaline, Nutrition

Third-Graders Plan Meals with Nutrition Services

District elementary students will get to eat a school lunch planned by their peers on Wednesday, May 4! Ms. Snell’s Clive Learning Academy class worked with Nutrition Services Director Willow Dye to create a menu featuring cheeseburgers, seasoned broccoli, fresh spinach, cherries, and vanilla ice cream with chocolate syrup.

myplate_yellowThe WDMCS Nutrition Services Department periodically partners with third-grade classes throughout the district to teach students about the Department of Agriculture’s “MyPlate” initiative and how it ties into school lunch. Teachers can invite Dye to talk to classes after completing a “Choose My Plate” unit. Dye presents on the five food groups offered in school lunches and has students sort foods into the different groups. Students often have questions about dessert and learn that it is a “sometimes” food for special occasions, not all the time.

To learn more about “MyPlate” and the other resources Nutrition Services has to offer, visit

Nutrition Services will also be celebrating School Lunch Hero Day on May 6. The district will be honoring its Lunch Room Heroes at every school on that day. To get involved and help recognize the school lunch heroes in your building, contact Cheryl McLellan, the nutrition services human resources supervisor, at or 515-633-5091.

Topics: Nutrition

Fruit Smoothies, Freshly Baked Muffins, and Prizes Served Up March 7-10

breakfast_programWDMCS students can enjoy fruit smoothies and freshly baked muffins, win prizes, and celebrate the most important meal of the day at breakfast parties March 7-10.

On Tuesday, March 8, the WDMCS Nutrition Services Department will whip up fruit smoothies and fresh blueberry-banana muffins for students as part of National School Breakfast Week.

Elementary students can also enter a coloring contest to win prizes in different grade groups. Junior high students are invited to play games, answer trivia questions, and sample breakfast foods at a special School Breakfast Week Party on one day of the week. Valley Southwoods students will have the chance to win signed NFL memorabilia during breakfast.

Nutrition Services will also be giving away small prizes throughout the week to students who eat breakfast at school.

Join us for breakfast! Come to your school’s cafeteria 30 minutes before the start of school.

For more information, please call 515-633-5094.

Coloring Contest Sheets
Print your coloring sheets here, or pick them up at your school. Your contest entries are due back to school by lunch time on Friday, March 10.

For Grades K-3

For Grades 4-6


Topics: Nutrition

Eat, Compete, and Have Fun!

Elementary Pupils Collecting Healthy Lunch In CafeteriaFrom Oct. 12-19, the WDMCS district will be celebrating the school lunch program with National School Lunch Week.

The week will emphasize the healthy foods that are offered daily at our schools and include fun lunchtime activities for students and their families.

Here’s how we are celebrating:

Have Lunch With Your Child! at elementary schools all week

  • Parents are encouraged to visit school and eat lunch with their elementary-aged children. Each school will also host a police officer and Valley student-athletes in their uniforms who will eat with students.

Fun Games with Food Prizes! at Indian Hills Oct. 13, Stilwell Oct. 12, and Southwoods Oct. 15

  • Nutrition employees will visit these schools with nutrition trivia and estimation games. Winner of the “How Many in the Jar?” contest will receive a la carte credit, and students who participate in trivia will get a free sample of a smoothie or mini-bagel pizza bite.Stickers will also be placed on random trays. Students with the stickered trays can collect a free a la carte item.

Special Pizza Delivery! at Valley Oct. 14 and Walnut Creek Oct. 16

  • Nutrition employees will visit Valley High School and Walnut Creek Campus with activities, and students will also get a special meal. Domino’s Pizza will deliver special Domino’s pizzas that meet school lunch guidelines! It will be served as part of a reimbursable lunch or an a la carte item.

Please join us in celebrating National School Lunch Week, Oct. 12-19!

Topics: Nutrition

Check Out the New NutriSlice App!

A new NutriSlice app is now available for iOS and Android, so you can access lunch and breakfast  menus on-the-go! Some pictures and descriptions are still to come.

The menus are online. After the Bell and Kids West snack program menus are now available. Information about the menu items includes a photo, nutrition facts, and a description. NutriSlice also contains a ‘Meal Planner’ tool that allows you to select foods you have eaten or plan to eat and generates custom nutrition labels based on your meal.

Topics: Nutrition

National School Breakfast Week Contest Winners Announced

The West Des Moines Nutrition Department held a contest to celebrate National School Breakfast Week, March 2 through March 6. Students were invited to create Breakfast Week-themed artwork, with different activities based on grade level. Prizes include iPad Minis, Nintendo DSs, special treats, having submissions displayed in our cafeterias, and credit toward the student’s breakfast/lunch account. The winners of the contest have now been chosen. The following students will be contacted about collecting their prizes:

  • Kindergarten–first grade: Chloe Knox (first), Isabel Rodriguez (second), Moriah Denhart (third)
  • Third–sixth grades: Elliott Oleson (first), Emily Bright (second), Ria Tomar (third)
  • Seventh and eighth grade: Radha Velamuri (first), Aidan Feldman (second)
  • Ninth–twelfth grades: Maddy Triplett

Congratulations to all participants on their great artwork!

Topics: Nutrition

National School Breakfast Week Contest

nutrition_breakfast_contest_pageWest Des Moines Nutrition Department will be holding a contest to celebrate National School Breakfast Week, March 2 through March 6. Prizes include iPad Minis, Nintendo DSs, special treats, having their submission displayed in our cafeterias, and credit toward the student’s breakfast/lunch account! Contest rules and activities vary based on student’s grade level:

  • K-2: Share your creativity with us by coloring this page for our breakfast program!
  •  3-6: Show off you artistic abilities by coloring this page for our breakfast program!
  •  7-8: Get creative and draw, color, paint, or take a food-art photograph of your favorite breakfast foods!
  •  9-12: Design a logo for the Nutrition Department’s breakfast program. Logo will be featured on our breakfast menus!

If you are not able to print the coloring page from home, please see the office at your student’s school for a copy. Three student winners from grades K-2, 3-6, 7-8, and 9-12 will be selected to receive a prize. Entries will be accepted through midnight on Wednesday, March 11 2015. Submissions can be scanned or emailed to Brianna Metzel at Submissions may also be dropped off at the Learning Resource Center to the nutrition department, or at the cafeteria in your student’s school during breakfast or lunch.

Topics: Nutrition

Peas and Carrots with Willow Dye

staff-willow-dyeGetting to know our new WDMCS Director of Nutrition, Willow Dye.

What is your favorite

  • TV Show: I do not watch much television. Any sporting events such as basketball, baseball/softball or football or the history channel would be my favs.
  • Movie: The Sandlot
  • School Lunch: Orange Chicken and Brown Rice
  • Restaurant: Appare Japanese Steakhouse or Chicago Speakeasy

What attracted you to working in school nutrition? What is the most rewarding aspect?
The attraction to school nutrition was the impact I was able to have on a large population nutritional status and my desire to improve upon the national school lunch program. I understand the importance of good nutrition and the ability to learn and I love being a part of that process.

The most rewarding aspect to me is providing my staff the tools to create a quality program and being able to see the pride and satisfaction that fosters as well as the feedback provided from the staff and students and appreciation they show us for the meals that we provide.

What does the nutrition department do to ensure delicious and nutritious meals are offered to students?
All of our meals meet the State and Federal Guidelines set forth for child nutrition programs. In addition we use nutrient analysis calculations as well as a popularity index to determine acceptability of meals.

Are there any new and exciting things you plan on bringing to the lunch table?
Currently our focus is on breakfast. Districtwide our breakfast participation is low and we have set goals to increase breakfast participation. National school breakfast week is March 3-7. Numerous studies have shown students that eat breakfast have higher test scores, less difficulty paying attention in class and fewer nurse visits as well as absences from school.

What are two tips you would give parents who want to have their children at least try more nutrition foods?
Two tips I would give is to involve the child in the meal planning, shopping and preparation process. Give them the task at the grocery store of picking out a new fruit or vegetable to try.

Try and include as many sit down family meals as possible. Children that consume meals as a family are more likely to try new food items and consume a healthier diet than those who do not share in family meals.

Would you share your favorite family recipe with us? Why is it your favorite?
Carrot Zucchini Cake is my family favorite recipe. My grandmother used to make it for me and I was “allowed” to have cake for breakfast! A warm slice of heaven first thing in the morning made it oh so good! I have altered the recipe to make it a whole grain rich cake by substituting part of the all purpose flour for whole wheat flour and the cake is delicious and nutritious!

4 eggs
2 cups sugar
1 1/3 cups canola oil
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup all purpose flour
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp ground allspice
1 tsp ground ginger}
½ tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp salt
2 cups zucchini
2 cups carrots
1 cup nuts

1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
5 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract

In a large bowl beat eggs and sugar until frothy. Gradually beat in oil. Combine dry ingredients; add to batter. Beat 4 minutes. Stir in carrots, zucchini and nuts. Pour into three greased 9-in. round baking pans. Bake at 350° for about 35 minutes or until top springs back when lightly touched. Cool 5 minutes before removing from pans. Cool thoroughly on a wire rack.

For frosting, beat cream cheese and butter in a large bowl until smooth. Add sugar and vanilla. Continue beating until sugar is dissolved. Spread between the layers and over the top and sides of the cake. Garnish with whole or chopped nuts. 12-14 servings.

Topics: Nutrition