Many children may daydream about a prince or princess coming to visit them during a routine school day, but on Wednesday, one British kindergarten class was delighted by a special visit from Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge.
The former Kate Middleton visited the London Early Years Foundation Stockwell Gardens Nursery & Preschool to serve the kids breakfast and discuss the importance of enjoying a healthy morning meal each day. During her visit, she also proved to be a very hands-on helper and even shared a few special tidbits about her own children's current food preferences.
In one video posted to Twitter, the duchess is seen entering the classroom while pushing a cart of fruit, cereal and milk.
School manager Michelle Samuels told TODAY that the breakfast included whole wheat biscuit cereal, bran flakes, puffed wheat and porridge, while the fruit platter included banana slices, oranges, papaya, grapes and apples.
Samuels said the duchess told the group that the choices offered mirrored what she enjoys feeding her own children in the morning.
"She mentioned to three of the children that her own children enjoy apples and cereal in the morning, which sparked a conversation with the children about their own preference of fruits," said Samuels. "She mentioned that she likes papaya to a child who was reluctant to try a piece of papaya.
"After this, the child tried some papaya."
If it's good enough for royalty, it's certainly good enough for us, too, kid.
In addition to discussing nutrition with the kids, the duchess also spoke with parents and school staff about the impact nutrition has on children's physical and emotional health during early development. As with many conversations that revolve around kids and healthy eating, the topic of getting young ones to eat vegetables came up.
When Luke Nelson-Neil, one of the school’s trainee chefs, remarked that he has a tough time getting kids to try beets, the former Kate Middleton surprised him with her reply.
"I was feeling so nervous at the time, and I just mentioned that I still couldn't get mine to eat (beetroot), and she said that her children love it!" Nelson-Neil recalled.
The Duchess of Cambridge has actually discussed her kids' love for the earthy root vegetable before.
During her holiday baking special with celebrity baker Mary Berry in December, the duchess revealed that all three of her children, especially Prince Louis, love beets. “We grow our own vegetables,” the duchess told Berry on the BBC special "A Berry Royal Christmas."
“We’ve got carrots, beans, beetroot — a massive favorite — Louis absolutely loves beetroot," she said.
Inspired by the young royals' affection for beets, Berry made a beetroot and chocolate cake during the show.
The royal family also has a history of being bonkers for beets. According to former royal chef Darren McGrady, who served Prince Charles and Princess Diana when Prince William and Prince Harry were children, the boys were not into beets. But their mother was.
"Princess Diana loved beets. She ate them a lot and even juiced them," McGrady told TODAY.
In addition to loving beets, the late princess of Wales was also a big believer in starting the day off right.
"Princess Diana ate healthy," McGrady said. "Scrambled eggs or beans on toast, grapefruit or melon. She also loved cereals but only ate Raisin Splitz." Kellogg's sold Raisin Splitz, a cereal made from shredded wholegrain wheat filled with raisin jam, in the late 1980s and early 1990s.
The former Kate Middleton recently launched her 5 Big Questions on the Under Fives survey, which covers various elements of childhood development, including nature versus nurture, as well as the importance of health and happiness during developmental years.
“For the past eight years, The Duchess has been hearing from people around the UK about the importance of the early years for future health and happiness. Now she wants to hear from you, so have your say on raising the next generation here,” the Kensington Palace Twitter account posted about the initiative.
The survey asks all respondents to answer five questions. According to the palace, the findings will help shape school event planning and guide the duchess' future work related to children.