I agree with the Bloomberg administration.
Uh, huh - you heard right.
The City Council wants to make free breakfast available in every classroom in the New York City school system, but the Bloomberg administration opposes it.
And I agree with Mayor Mike:
On Wednesday, the City Council took a stand on free school breakfasts. Lawmakers want to make it mandatory in every classroom. It's now available in the cafeteria.
It's something that the Bloomberg administration has no appetite for. They contend the requirement might lead to childhood obesity, as some kids might have the day's most important meal twice.
"We are not going to mandate this," said Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott. "It's something that our principals have the ability to opt into and so we want them to opt into it if that's what they want to do. Our goal is to increase the breakfast served, whether it's in the classroom or people walking in."
"So we've looked at that study and we think it is flawed and doesn't in any way support that the school breakfast is leading to childhood obesity," she said.
Now I don't know if breakfast in classrooms will lead to an increase in childhood obesity, but I do know this - focusing on ONE thing at a time when you're eating is the best way to not mindlessly overeat.
Either you're eating or you're learning - not both.
We have this culture that values "multitasking," as if there is a such a way as dividing the human brain and attention span so that it can give effective focus to doing more than one thing at once.
You can give something 100% of your attention or you can divide your attention and do two things at once or you can do as many things as you want at the same time and divide your attention and focus even more.
But the more you do at the same time, the less focus and mindfulness you give to each task.
This is especially so with food.
I know that if I'm sitting at the computer eating, I am more likely to mindlessly eat more calories than if I am sitting at a table focused on my food.
Sure, that's anecdotal - but there are studies to show that multitasking while eating leads people to eat more calories.
Eat first, then go to class.
If kids aren't showing up in time for breakfast, then build that into the schedule.
But leave the food out of the classroom and let students be as mindful about their eating and their learning as they can be.
We need more mindfulness around our activities, not less.