Facilitator Information

Checklist - Running a Back to Basics session

On the day before each session

  1. Read through and familiarise yourself with each session plan.
  2. Print/photocopy the handouts needed for each session.
  3. Purchase the food. NOTE: Session 2 and 3 require additional food items purchased for the parent’s activity table display.
  4. Ensure cooking equipment is available and in working order.

At the beginning of each session

  1. Arrive in enough time to set up the room, ingredients, equipment and parents activities before the children arrive.
  2. Serve children a small afternoon tea such as: raw vegetable sticks, apple, orange or pear wedges or savoury biscuit with tomato and reduced fat cheese
  3. Complete the attendance form found in Appendix K and make yourself aware of any food allergies that the children have.
  4. Issue name tags to children and parents.
  5. Get all children to wash and dry their hands, tie their hair back, roll up their sleeves and put on their aprons.
  6. Introduce the session content to the children and give an overview of what we will be cooking today.
  7. Ask if any of the children have cooked with any of the fruits or vegetables from the session recipe) before.
  8. Ask the children what they have cooked at home since the last Back to Basics session.
  9. Remind the children of the group agreement (Appendix J) and safe food handling and kitchen practices (Appendix F, G).

During the session

  1. Encourage and remind children to clean up as they go.
  2. Watch out for food falling from the bench and ensure it is cleaned up immediately as this creates a slip hazard.
  3. In the event of an incident a Back to Basics incident report must be completed (Appendix L).

At the end of each session

  1. Clean and pack up, encourage parents to participate in the clean up as this is an example of good role modelling.
  2. Conduct session evaluation.
  3. Write a shopping list for the next session.


  1. Be organised- have everything set up and be familiar with the session before everyone arrives.
  2. Try preparing the meal at home before the session so that you are familiar with the process.
  3. Keep ahead of the program, at the end of each session have a look at the next session, write the shopping lists and check equipment is clean and in good working order. Ensure the kitchen is left clean and tidy and ready to go for the next session.
  4. Be happy, friendly and enthusiastic, this will rub off on the children’s and parent’s attitude.
  5. When cooking with the children make sure all of the ingredients have been cut up, prepared and are ready to be cooked BEFORE starting the cooking process. For example if you are cooking a stir fry make sure all the vegetables are cut up, the meat is sliced, the noodles cooked and the ingredients for the sauce measured out before you begin cooking the stir fry. Place all ingredients in front of you before you start the cooking process. That way you won’t need to walk away from the stove while you are cooking. In restaurants and cafes this is known as ‘Mise en place’ meaning everything in place!
  6. Additional volunteers may be needed during session one and session five so that the evaluation can be done within the Back to Basics time frame.
  7. Contact the University if your school is interested in having student dietitians assist with your program.



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About this site…

Food habits that are formed during childhood have a big influence on health outcomes on adulthood.

The Back to Basics program helps to expose young children to healthy food to improve their health both now and in the future.

The development of this program has been made possible by the support of:


Medibank Community Fund

Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation


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