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Off topic: What do you call the snack you eat at school in the mid-morning break?
Thread poster: Alexandra Speirs

Alexandra Speirs  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:36
Italian to English
+ ...
Oct 17, 2015

I have been asked this by my sister who teaches English in Austria.
It's for a project of some kind.

When you were at school and you took something to eat in the mid-morning break, what did you call it?
I don't mean the packed lunch.
Something like an apple or a bag of crisps, that's what I used to take.

The problem is, what is the correct name in English?
In Scotland we call it a "piece" or a "playpiece" (because you eat it at playtime).
But I'm sure that's a regional variety and there must be something more widely acceptable.

So please add your suggestions, the more the merrier.

Thanks in advance!


 

Nicole Coesel  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 13:36
Member (2012)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Mid-morning snack Oct 17, 2015

Hi Alexandra,

I think whatever that mid-morning snack is called differs per country/region/school. Here in the Netherlands, at least the school that my daughter attends, only allows a "fruit or veggie snack" mid-morning. No bread, sweets or chips allowed. They take it very far here. On Mondays and Fridays, I provide the snack and on other days, the school does. That way the children have the opportunity to aquire new tastes.


 

Robin Levey
Chile
Local time: 08:36
Spanish to English
+ ...
Elevenses Oct 17, 2015

When I was at school (45+ years ago...) in the SE of England, I either took "elevenses" from home - Kit-Kat, Mars Bar, Smith's Crisps (the ones with the salt in a twist of blue paper) etc. - or bought the same from the school 'tuck shop' with pocket money.

Elevenses - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elevenses
Wikipedia
Elevenses (pronunciation: /ɨˈlɛvənzɨz/) is a short break taken at around 11 A.M. to consume a drink and/or snack of some sort. The name and details vary ...

Now, aged 60+, I still call my mid-morning snack 'elevenses' - but it's more likely to be a slice of fruit cake and a chunk of hard cheese, accompanied by a twin-size mug of strong black coffee.

BTW, the local equivalent in Chile, where I now live, is called "once" (= "eleven"). The difference, compared to my recollections from childhood, is that it's likely to take the form of a huge sandwich ('completo') stuffed full of just about everything the diet experts try to prohibit, and it may be eaten at almost any time of day.

RL


 

Michael Wetzel  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 13:36
German to English
don't think it exists in the US Oct 17, 2015

As a kid in Illinois in the '80s and '90s, we certainly never had anything like that and substitue teaching around 2000, I never saw it either. It's funny, because I now always wonder how to translate my kids' "Brotbüchse" into (American) English, because "lunch box" is the only term I can think of and it is wrong at the level of content.

 

Alexandra Speirs  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:36
Italian to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Regional differences Oct 17, 2015

I know there are bound to be regional differences.

My mum told me about a girl from England who came to work with her and, when asked what she had in her "piece", didn't know what they were talking about.
She called it her "bait" (I suppose that's the spelling....).
So I'm hoping to collect some more suggestions.

When I was in the primary school there was free milk at playtime, but that was in ancient times!


 

Natalie Soper  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 12:36
French to English
+ ...
Snack Oct 17, 2015

In my school(s) we just referred to it as "snack" or used it in a sentence like "I've got a packet of crisps for break." I don't think the food itself has a name, come to think of it!

 

Helena Chavarria  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 13:36
Member (2011)
Spanish to English
+ ...
I used to call it 'break' Oct 17, 2015

Natalie Soper wrote:

In my school(s) we just referred to it as "snack" or used it in a sentence like "I've got a packet of crisps for break." I don't think the food itself has a name, come to think of it!


You eat breakfast at breakfast time
If it was pouring with rain we could eat our break indoors
You might take a packed lunch to school.
Some people have a sandwich and a piece of cake for (afternoon) tea
And you might ask someone what they fancy for supper

I think the meal has the same name as when we eat it.

That was in the south of Britain in the 60s and 70s!


 

Rachel Fell  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 12:36
French to English
+ ...
elevenses Oct 17, 2015

or snack/something for elevenses -

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elevenses


 

Helena Chavarria  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 13:36
Member (2011)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Elevenses was what my mother called morning coffee Oct 17, 2015

Rachel Fell wrote:

or snack/something for elevenses -

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elevenses


But I agree it has a number of names. I've also heard it called 'mid-morning break'.


 

Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 13:36
Member (2003)
Danish to English
+ ...
break at school, elevenses at home Oct 17, 2015

At my boarding school it was break - we had an early breakfast and were famished at lunchtime, in spite of being issued with milk and solid slices of bread and butter for mid-morning break. This was called break - some days there was 'jam for break' and other days there would be cheese.

At home it varied, but if we called it anything other than milk, tea or biscuits, it was probably elevenses.

Hardly anyone was overweight, in spite of solid meals and puddings - as well as fruit mid-afternoon.

That was back in the 1960s.


 

texjax DDS PhD  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:36
Member (2006)
English to Italian
+ ...
US: snack/snack time Oct 18, 2015

When my son was in fourth grade they used to have a mid-morning snack at the so-called snack time, since the actual lunch time at the cafeteria was at 12:35 and by that time the kids were probably ready to eat each other... icon_smile.gif

I think it applies only to elementary schools and - at least in our school district - only to those classes that happen have a late lunch.

http://www.examiner.com/article/snacktime-nyc-elementary-schools


[Edited at 2015-10-18 07:06 GMT]


 

Andy Watkinson
Spain
Local time: 13:36
Member
Catalan to English
+ ...
The milk snatcher Oct 18, 2015

Alexandra Speirs wrote:

When I was in the primary school there was free milk at playtime, but that was in ancient times!


For which you have a Scottish version of me to thank.

"Milk monitors" we were called at mine, circa 1964. Used to get there about an hour before school opened, so as to sort out the crates: 17 for class D, 21 for class A, etc... and then lug them to all the classrooms.

And I agree with the others: break, mid-morning snack, etc....


 

564354352 (X)  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 13:36
Danish to English
+ ...
What? Other countries have/had mid-morning snack breaks? Oct 18, 2015

We never did when I was at school (in Denmark) in the late 60s and early 70s. We had breakfast at home at around 7 am, a packed lunch (always rye bread with thinly sliced meats, no fruit or vegetables!) at 11.30 and dinner at home around 6 pm. That was it. Even afternoon snacks were largely unheard of, at least in my family. We weren't poor, that was just the standard back then.

Come to think of it, I should go back to that healthy regime (except for the meat, of course!) - might lose some excess weight!


 

Nicole Y. Adams, M.A.  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 21:36
Member (2006)
German to English
+ ...
Australia ("morning tea") Oct 18, 2015

Here in Australia my kids have a "morning tea" break at 10.30 am (which, funnily enough, is when they eat their lunch), and a "lunch" break at 1.30 pm (which is when they eat a snack).icon_smile.gif

They also eat "brain food" (fruit or yoghurt) in class at the start of each day.


 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 13:36
Spanish to English
+ ...
Aye fond memories Oct 18, 2015

Alexandra Speirs wrote:

When you were at school and you took something to eat in the mid-morning break, what did you call it?
I don't mean the packed lunch.
Something like an apple or a bag of crisps, that's what I used to take.

The problem is, what is the correct name in English?
In Scotland we call it a "piece" or a "playpiece" (because you eat it at playtime).
But I'm sure that's a regional variety and there must be something more widely acceptable.

Thanks in advance!


This takes me back. In fact, a piece and chips (aka a "chip butty" down south) is still a Glasgow delicacy I enjoy every time I go back, although nowadays it isincreasingly likely to be accompanied by things like pulled pork, spicy sausage, curry sauce or some other newfangled tomfoodery.

I think "elevenses" is probably the nearest "standard English" equivalent.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8A7SAPmcwXA


 
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