ChildForum Office of Pre-Primary Education

ChildForum Office of Pre-Primary EducationInforms and works to raise standards in the ECE sector
Represents the sector
Research publisher (NZ-International Research in ECE Journal)
Supports the Parent and Whānau information service (MyECE.org.nz)
Find out more About Us

 

Food Allergy Management and Meeting Children's Needs

food serving and allergiesSharing a sweet treat on your birthday is great fun, but in an early childhood setting it can be more complicated than simply working out how many pieces you need to cut the cake into.

If your centre or home-based service has children who have food allergies or intolerances, what seems like some harmless baking could be a potential health risk.

Common allergies in children include gluten, egg and nuts.

While the most severe allergic reactions can have major implications such as anaphylactic shock, even mild allergies can cause problems.

Symptoms can include itching, hives, vomiting and diarrhoea and food allergies can also exacerbate other problems such as eczema and asthma.

Food intolerance, while less severe than an allergy, can also cause problems such as nausea and stomach aches.

While catering for children with allergies might mean a little extra work there are simple practical things that you can do to make sure their experience is a good one.

Explain clearly to other parents and children, if they are old enough to understand, that the allergic child cannot have certain foods and may not be able to share lunches or any treats which are bought in. It is important to explain to the children that this does not mean the allergic child is bad or that the child is unfriendly, but simply that their body does not like certain foods. If a child has a severe allergy you may need to consider banning some foods completely.

Make sure children wash their hands before and after eating so that traces of things like nuts or dairy are not transferred to toys.

If you are doing baking activities with children or making play-dough, look for allergy free recipes, for example wheat-free play-dough so that all the children can join in. If this is not possible make sure children with allergies are given tasks that will mean they do not come into contact with potential hazards.

Ask parents only to bring shop bought cakes for sharing at birthdays so that you can check the ingredients list before serving them. Another option might be to ask parents to consider getting other treats like fruit kebabs to share on special occasions which are still fun but which are less likely to cause allergies.

Encouraging these healthier choices can help children with allergies but will also benefit all the children at a centre by highlighting healthy eating choices and encouraging a healthier lifestyle.

It is also important to make sure that allergies are also covered in the centre’s paperwork. Make sure you have a clear policy for allergy management and that parents clearly state any allergies their child has on the enrolment form and provide any medication they might need.

You will also need to train staff to deal with any allergic reaction from the mild to the severe.

READ MORE


Oops ... you are attempting to read material in the ECE Service member area.  Only ECE Services can access this.  Don't miss out!  

To keep reading, you need to login Smile

Is your ECE service not a member?  Look below ↓ for the click here button below ↓   It will take you to the membership page to choose your own unique username and password.  


Don’t miss out any longer, click the button below to join ChildForum

Join Us!

child-with-binoculars-small

 

Subscribe now for information you can trust, expert advice and research, as well as access to quality resources. 

We are confident you will be delighted to discover and experience the benefits of membership - so join now and make this message for non-members disappear from your screen. 

Membership Options

Individual
Member

Who is this for?
Teachers, Eductors, Lecturers, Policy Advisors - any indivdual with an interest in ECE

$98.00 12 months from the date of joining
$60.00 6 months student-only

Choose your own personal username and password
(Note that this membership does not give access to specialist ECE Service members-only info and support) 

ECE Service Organisation
Member

Who is this for?
Centres, home-based, hospital-based, playgroups ... established or newly licensed.

$198.00 12 months per standalone licensed service
Special rates for organisations with more than 1 licensed service

This membership gives access to professional & research materials enjoyed by individual members PLUS ECE service management area info and support. 

Library NZ-International Research
in ECE Journal Subscriber

Who is this for?
Universities, Polytechnics and organisations wishing to have online access to the NZ-Int Research in ECE journal (includes all past and current issues) 

$125.00 annual subscription, renewable in November each year

A username and password for your library users linked to your IP address.