School Lunch In NYC vs School Lunch In Japan

rock mama nyc lifestyle blog-School Lunch In NYC VS School Lunch In Japan

I grow up in Japan. My son who is almost 6 years old, was born in NYC, and is growing up in NYC. I took him back home to Japan this summer to experience Japanese school. He was amazed by the many differences between the public schools in NYC and Japan, and especially the school lunch. When he started to go to school in NYC, he was curious about the school lunch and wanted to try it. I usually cook Japanese food at home so he hasn't eaten much American food yet at that time. I decided to let him eat the school lunch and he was so excited, but after a few days, he told me that he doesn't want to eat the school lunch anymore. Since then, I prepare his lunch every day.

Today, I would like to share what school lunch is like in Japan. My son has 4 cousins in Japan. I asked my sister to send me a menu from one of his cousins who is attending a public elementary school in Shiga Prefecture, Japan. (see below) Usually, the lunch fee depends on your family income. At my nephew's school, lunch is about $2.50 a day. You basically pay for the ingredients and the City covers everything else. (worker, kitchen rent, gas fee etc)  Japanese elementary schools usually don't have cafeterias. The students take turns to serve lunch to their classmates, even first graders, and they eat in their class room.  At lunch time, everyone starts to eat at the same time after they say "Itadaki-masu." (Thank you for everything) And when you finish eating, you don't start to walk around. You will wait until your class mates are finished and everyone says "Gochisou same desshita." (Thank you for meal) Then, they clean after themselves and prepare the classroom for classes again.  Japanese food education is great! I love raising my son in NYC, but it is important for us to show him his back ground culture and experience it. 


Barley rice, pork cooked with ginger, spinach and tuna stir fry, cooked potato and ground chicken with curry source and milk.

Tuesday (They try to introduce different kind of food. This week was German food)

Rye bread, honey, sausage with mustard, mashed potato, beef and bean soup and milk.


Barley rice, deep-fried squid, stir fried lotus root and pork, tofu and spinach miso soup and milk.


Brown rice bread, sauce de horse mackerel, sauce de bok-choy and corn, creamy carrot soup and milk.

Friday( They try to use local foods)

Barley rice (from their home town Otsu City Shiga prefecture), deep fried grunt fish with seaweed (the fish is from lake Biwa. Which is biggest lake of Japan in Shiga prefecture) Red yam cake cooked with higiki seaweed (Red yam cake is Shiga prefecture's traditional dishes) Bean soup and milk.

I found an interesting article about What school lunches look like in 20 Countries Around The World. Select the link to take a look at school lunch in Japan and US as well as other countries.

この夏、日本に息子と一ヶ月滞在し、日本の保育園に2週間半ほど預けてのですが、息子はニューヨークの学校と日本の学校の違いに色々驚いたようです。中でも給食。私は日本で育ったので、アメリカのスクールランチについては’子供ができるまでよく知らなかったのですが、ニューヨークの公立の学校のスクールランチはあまり良いとは思えません。私たちはニューヨークに住んでいますが、だいたい家で日本食を作って食べることが多く、2年前に息子が学校に行き始めた時は、息子もまだそんなにアメリカンフードを知らなくて、スクールランチを見て食べた事がないものが多かったので、いつも学校へはお弁当を持って行っていた息子が、スクールランチを食べたい!って言い出したんです。アメリカのスクールランチはあんまり栄養バランスが取れていないし美味しくないのは知っていましたが、息子の経験としてスクールランチを食べるのも良いだろうと思いスクールランチに切り替えたところ数日で『もうスクールランチは美味しくないから食べたくない』と言ってきました。それから毎日お弁当を作っています。息子の学校では給食時間とお昼休みを合わせて45分。そのうち食事の時間はたった15分(多分、15分は他のアメリカの学校と比べて短いと思います。)ランチを家から持ってきている子たちもいるし、カフェテリアのランチを食べる子たちもいる。教室ではなくカフェテリアで食べるから、この辺に座って食べてねってのはあるけど、自分の席もないし、誰と一緒に’食べてもいい。”いただきます” でみんなで一斉に食べだす習慣もアメリカにはないし本当バラバラ:)ちなみに息子の学校ではランチ一食$1ドル75セントですが、収入の低い家庭の子供達には無料でランチが提供されます。今日のブログはニューヨークの公立の小学校のメニューを紹介したいと思います。上の英語文では滋賀県に住む私の甥の学校給食のメニューを紹介したんですよ。日本の給食がどんなものか知らない人たちは食材の豊富さにとても驚くと思います。日本の給食は素晴らしいです!













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