Arts & Entertainment

See what kids around the world have for school lunch

The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
Daniel Ochoa de Olza/AP
The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A school lunch consisting of rice, salmon, ratatouille, a slice of bread, a salad with celery and carrots, and an orange and donut is laid out on a tray at the Anne Franck school in Lambersart, northern France, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. (AP Photo/Michel Spingler)
Michel Spingler/AP
The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
Students eat their lunch at the Bahria Foundation school in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most of the children at the school have home cooked food for lunch, which contain eggs, chicken nuggets, bread, rice or noodles. Some have vegetables, minced mutton or beef prepared and cooked at home the night before. Principal Syeda Arifa Mohsin says the school tries to dissuade parents from fixing junk food for their children. (AP Photo/Anjum Naveed)
Anjum Naveed/AP
The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
Assorted lunch plates are arranged at a table for students at the Bahria Foundation school in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most of the kids seen there have home cooked food for lunch. Principal Syeda Arifa Mohsin says the school tries to dissuade parents from fixing junk food for their children. “If we discover that a child has junk food, we ask his or her parents to please make a little effort for their child’s health,” Mohsin says. (AP Photo/Anjum Naveed)
Anjum Naveed/AP
The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
Bowls of salad are ready to be served, Tuesday, May 6, 2014 at Delcare Edu Center, a local kindergarten and child care center in the business district of Singapore. Everyday, lunch is prepared by the school's kitchen staff, who take great care to promote healthy eating in the selection of their ingredients and methods of food preparation. The children in this school are also taught to accept a wide variety of food and a weekly menu is prepared by the principal each school term. Healthy snacks consisting of fruits, home-made bread, natural beans, soup and barley are served between meals. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)
Wong Maye-E/AP
The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A school lunch at El Caminet del Besos kindergarten is pictured in Barcelona, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. The lunch is composed of cream of vegetable soup, pan-fried breast of veal with salad, a piece of bread, an orange or banana and water. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)
Manu Fernandez/AP
The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
Palestinian students hold up their sandwiches of pita bread stuffed with olive oil and zaatar, a mixture of herbs and spices, brought from home, during their half-hour mid-day break at about 11 a.m. in the West Bank city of Nablus, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Palestinian children in the West Bank usually eat during recess in the schoolyard, as there are no dining rooms in schools. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)
Majdi Mohammed/AP
The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A student's lunch box brought from home sits on display at an elementary school in Quito, Ecuador, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. The lunch consists of a sandwich of ham, cheese, tomato and lettuce, a boxed oatmeal drink, and an apple. (AP Photo/Dolores Ochoa)
Dolores Ochoa/AP
The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A public elementary school girl buys a pancake for her lunch on the street in Jakarta, Indonesia, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. In Indonesia, not every student can bring a lunch box to school. Public school students buy their lunch at school cafeterias or food stalls on the nearby streets. The price for one pancake is about one U.S. cent. (AP Photo/Achmad Ibrahim)
Achmad Ibrahim/AP
The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
Milagro Ramos, a student at the Angela Landa elementary school, spoons up rice from her lunch tray, which also contains a chicken croquette, a piece of taro root and yellow pea soup in Old Havana, Cuba, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Milagro brought fried plantains, lower left corner of her tray, and an orange drink from home. The children provide their own drinks. (AP Photo/Franklin Reyes)
Franklin Reyes/AP
The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
Children stand in a queue to receive a free mid-day meal made of sweetened rice at a government school on the outskirts of Jammu, India, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. The Mid-Day Meal is a massive school feeding program reaching out to millions of children in primary schools across India, mainly to enhance school enrollment and attendance and improve nutritional levels among children. (AP Photo/Channi Anand)
Channi Anand/AP
The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
Two lunch trays at a primary school in London are served during a lunch break on Tuesday, May 6, 2014. The meal choice at right consists of pasta with fresh broccoli and slices of bread, and seasonal fresh fruit. At left are vegetable chili with rice and fresh broccoli, sponge cake with custard, and a banana. The drink options are milk and water. (AP Photo/Sang Tan)
Sang Tan/AP
The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A school lunch salad entree option featuring low-sodium chicken, a whole-grain roll, fresh red peppers, and cilantro dressing is assembled in a lunch basket at Mirror Lake Elementary School in Federal Way, Wash., south of Seattle, Monday, May 5, 2014. On this day, students could choose between this salad and a more traditional lunch of a grilled cheese sandwich on whole grain bread served with a southwestern-style corn salad, fresh carrots and either canned pears or apple sauce. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
Ted S. Warren/AP
The school lunch of an omelette, vegetable soup, banana yogurt and water are served at the Chiquitin kindergarten in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Most countries seem to put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime. U.S. first lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier too. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)
A school lunch featuring a grilled cheese sandwich on whole grain bread is served with a southwestern-style corn salad, fresh carrots and either canned pears or apple sauce Monday, May 5, 2014, at Mirror Lake Elementary School in Federal Way, Wash., south of Seattle. On this day, students could choose between this lunch or a green salad entree option featuring low-sodium chicken, a whole-grain roll, fresh red peppers, and cilantro dressing. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
Ted S. Warren/AP


First lady Michelle Obama is on a mission to make American school lunches healthier by replacing greasy pizza and french fries with whole grains, low fat protein, fresh fruit and vegetables.

The Associated Press helps you compare her efforts in the United States with what kids are eating around the globe by sending photographers to see what kids in Asia, Europe, Africa and Latin America ate for lunch this week.

RELATED: Schools seek changes to healthier lunch rules

The new American standards are giving kids in the United States a taste of the good life already experienced by school children around the world. Most countries put a premium on feeding school children a healthy meal at lunchtime.

Many kids go home to eat lunch with their families or bring a lunch cooked by their parents.

Although few schools sell lunch, snacks are available around the world. In many places those snacks are as unhealthy as treats in the United States: fried doughnuts in Mali and Pakistan, candy in the West Bank, fried chicken nuggets in France.

American children are more likely to eat a lunch made in a school cafeteria, although other countries are starting to adopt this practice as more mothers go to work outside the home.

In France, lunch is an art form: hot, multi-course and involving vegetables. While their mothers were at work Tuesday, children in Lambersart in northern France were served ratatouille, salmon, rice, a chunk of baguette and an orange.

Healthy lunches are offered in public school cafeterias in the United Arab Emirates but the children of foreigners attending private schools get fancier, multi-cultural offerings like American barbecue, Indian curries and Asian noodles.

Fresh food is also on the menu at the DEL-Care Edu Center in downtown Singapore, where students are fed breakfast, lunch and even dinner for kids of parents who work late. Typical lunches include spaghetti marinara, fish slices, chicken casserole or lotus root soup.

Kids usually bring a home-cooked meal to school in Pakistan, where school leaders check lunch boxes for junk food and admonish parents to keep things healthy. A typical sack lunch at The Bahria Foundation school in Rawalpindi, adjacent to the capital, Islamabad, includes eggs, chicken nuggets, bread, rice or noodles. Some also include leftovers such as minced mutton and vegetables cooked the night before.

In Federal Way, Washington, schools have embraced the first lady's lunch campaign.

At Mirror Lake Elementary, about 20 miles south of Seattle, students ate grilled cheese sandwiches, corn salad, fresh carrots, apple sauce and low-fat milk on Monday. The bread was whole grain, the cheese low fat and low sodium, the carrots fresh and fruit the only dessert.

Fried food, white bread, sugar-laden desserts and overcooked vegetables have all but disappeared from the American school menu.

Anything kids can pick up with their fingers is popular in the younger grades. High school students enjoy some spicy and exotic choices, especially Asian flavors, says Federal Way chef and dietitian Adam Pazder.

AP reporters Ali Akbar Dareini in Tehran, Iran, Baba Ahmed in Bamako, Mali, Zeina Karam in Beirut, Lebanon, Josef Federman in Jerusalem, Israel, Sameer Yacoub in Baghdad, Iraq, Nasser Nasser in Ramallah, West Bank, Adam Schreck in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Angela Charlton in Paris and Anjum Naveed in Rawalpindi, Pakistan and photographer Wong Maye-E in Singapore contributed to this story.