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Rise and Shine: Exploring Thacher’s Breakfast Check In System

By Jamie Song ’19

Over the years, “breakfast check-in” has become more of an inconvenience and a burden in the perspective of many students rather than a helpful regulation to remind one to eat breakfast. During the highly active daily schedules of Thacher’s school life, the obligation of getting up early and hurrying to the dining hall to avoid a kitchen strike is reasonably not favored by the majority of the students.

This strong dislike was expressed when asked about their feelings toward breakfast check in a survey sent out to the students: 79% of the students who answered the survey believed that the breakfast check in was not necessary. Interestingly 64.5% of the students also believed that breakfast check in was ineffective in making one eat breakfast. Although the entire objective of breakfast check in is to encourage one to eat breakfast, many felt that it did not successfully accomplish this goal.

Ms. Mcmahon, the Dean of Students, however, very clearly explained the intentions of breakfast check in and its’ significance. “Breakfast check in is an important start to the day for our students. To be in the best mindset and have the appropriate energy for the academic challenges each day, some healthy food fuel can be an important key to success for students”.

The research appears to support Ms.McMahon’s position. When we wake up in the morning, our glucose supplies are very low which in other words means we have low energy levels. A nutritious meal filled with protein, good fats, and complex carbohydrates could be helpful in giving that energy required to push one through the hectic day that awaits. An experiment conducted by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that those who ate breakfast used more energy through physical activity compared to those who skipped this morning meal. Ms. McMahon went on to add, “We are hopeful that students can adapt to a regular wake-up schedule which will allow them to be at breakfast check in every day. We are always happy to hear suggestions from students.”

 Other than the difficulty of the actual process of waking up early, having that regular routine of getting up at a certain time to prepare for school and grab some food, can be beneficial. It is understandable that for those who live in the dorms located far from the dining hall, it can be a cumbersome task to walk all the way to the dining hall, half-awake, and possibly not hungry due to the early time. Based on these factors, breakfast check in appears to have its’ perks and shortcomings. On the bright side, Ms. McMahon claims she is always open to hearing suggestions, therefore ideas for improving the breakfast check in system can be and should be shared, as many members of the community would most likely benefit from them.

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