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  #1  
Old 01-27-2010, 01:25 PM
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Default If They Don't Like Lunch/Snack???

I feed all the kids the same snack/lunch so that I'm not spending overtime in the kitchen getting each child something differnent. I know that's how most daycares work but what do you do if a child doesn't like what you're having? Do you offer a replacement...like 2 choices at lunch (for example if you don't like the main meal you can have a peanut butter&Jelly sandwich)?

I have a couple picky eaters in my daycare and I refuse to get everyone something different, it just takes too long. Do you just have parents look at the menu and if there is something the child won't eat than they bring their lunch for the day?

I'm just wondering how everyone else works it. Thanks.
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Old 01-27-2010, 01:38 PM
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Originally Posted by My4SunshineGirlsNY View Post
I feed all the kids the same snack/lunch so that I'm not spending overtime in the kitchen getting each child something differnent. I know that's how most daycares work but what do you do if a child doesn't like what you're having? Do you offer a replacement...like 2 choices at lunch (for example if you don't like the main meal you can have a peanut butter&Jelly sandwich)?

I have a couple picky eaters in my daycare and I refuse to get everyone something different, it just takes too long. Do you just have parents look at the menu and if there is something the child won't eat than they bring their lunch for the day?

I'm just wondering how everyone else works it. Thanks.
I don't offer something different. There's normally something they might eat, like the veggie or fruit.

But on the other hand my son has food allergies and can't eat somethings that I feed the others. So I make him something different.
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Old 01-27-2010, 01:41 PM
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When I first started doing daycare, I didn't know- so I made other things for the ones that didn't like the lunch, then I had ones that didn't like that, or ones that would want that instead of what I originally made, it didn't take me long to figure out, I make one lunch and one am snack, and one pm snack, if they do not like it, they don't eat it!! The very same for snacks, I have one girl that is really picky, when she first started coming, I think she tought I would fix her something else. It didn't take her long to figure it out either, she would be very hungry, if she didn't eat it. I don't make anything exotic, or something that I wouldn't eat myself.
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Old 01-27-2010, 01:48 PM
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I have had picky eaters too, but I don't make special meals for them. I make one food program compliant menu, and (barring actual allergies) everyone is offered the same. They do not have to eat it, however, they cannot get seconds of a favored food, like diced peaches, if they chose to not eat the other foods offered. Sometimes that is enough to motivate them to eat at least a small serving of beans or whatever they typically would not eat. I have a Healthy Eating Chart, and on Fridays for snack everyone with 1 frowny face or less gets to help make cookies or brownies for a special treat. If someone refuses healthy choices regularly and has daily frowny faces on their chart, they did not earn the special treat. I'm clear with parents about the importance of good eating habits, and I let parents know if a child was throwing fits or whatever about their food, and make clear I expect that child to have healthy choices only that evening- not pop or suckers etc. I expect my parents to support and work with me on instilling healthy habits. For the most part that has worked- I have one mom that I know doesnt enforce good eating habits at home and admittedly has poor habits herself- (hates veges etc) but I still expect the same at least at my house- and if fits work for mom, too bad, they earn a time out and a frowny face here.
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Old 01-27-2010, 02:15 PM
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I do not make special meals. Even the picky eaters end up finding something they like on the plate...the fruit/veggie or bread. I f I know they dont like the main dish I plan on giving them more of what they did like (ie. another slice of bread or fruit)
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Old 01-27-2010, 02:16 PM
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Everyone here gets the same thing. If they don't like it they don't eat. With a healthy meal there are usually 4-5 choices. Out of those choices there will be something they will eat. I also don't allow them to bring food from home. At first I thought this was a good idea but then parents bring treats that other kids want so it's not fair to the children that eat well.
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Old 01-27-2010, 02:31 PM
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I make one meal for everyone. I have one picky eater but he knows better than to complain too much. There's one thing he won't eat, and that's tuna, so when I'm serving something with tuna in it, he gets a peanut butter sandwich.

That backfired on me one day though. I make my own bread and the loaf had just come out a couple hours before lunch. I didn't know at the time he wouldn't eat tuna, so he ended up having this peanut butter sandwich on super fresh bread and even I was drooling over it all through lunch time LOL.
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Old 01-27-2010, 03:34 PM
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This really irked me at my former center. We have had 2 menus posted for the parents to read what the children were eating and of course no one ever read them. Then they wonder why their child didn't eat.

We USED to offer a substitute food such as a peanut butter/jelly sandwich. Only because we have had children there sometimes as long as 12 hours with just 2 small snacks in their tummies. However once that got out of control "oh I am not going to eat because I am going to get a sandwich" we stopped doing that. Of course parents would get upset because we never offered anything else. Yet when told that they could bring something, they never did. We just flatly told them that we are not a restaurant. What is served is served. Besides if the state came in and saw the subs then we would be in trouble because that is not being posted blah blah blah!
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Old 01-27-2010, 10:58 PM
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I also don't provide a second choice. I make what I make and if they don't want to eat it then they don't eat it. There is always SOMETHING on the plate that they like though. If they didn't eat very much I always just tell the parent when they get picked up.

Sometimes when the kids have been very good or on special days, I give the kids breakfast, snack and lunch choices (three of each) and they can vote and choose what they want to have on the Friday of the next week. It's kind of like a party. They even get to help prepare it (as long as it doesn't involve a knife, stove etc). I don't even allow parent's to substitute my food with their own unless it's store bought, meats food program guidelines and they bring enough for all of the kids. I mean really, how is a child supposed to know if they like something if you never give them anything but chicken nuggets??? The only exeption is if they have allergies (i.e. if they have milk allergies they can provide soy milk etc). I don't provide any substitutions even when they have allergies, I make it the parent's responsibility to do that.
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Old 01-28-2010, 01:06 AM
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"Picky Eater" is just another way of saying "spoiled". If the parent didn't cater to the child and had the spine to tell them "This is dinner-eat it, stare at it, don't matter to me, but this is all you're getting", this would not be such a problem.

They soon figure out that at our house, they're going to be fed things like roast beef, mashed taters, gravy, corn, beans, meatloaf, etc. I always tell them, "I won't feed you anything that is going to hurt you, PROMISE".

We've had kids that try the "I don't like meatloaf" game, and we make a deal with them....all we ask is they just try it. 9 times out of 10, they end up asking for seconds. Then when the parents hear that their kid ate this or that and asked for seconds, they're dumbfounded....."Little Johnny won't eat (insert food) at home?"

I always tell them "If you don't like it, Bert does" (Bert is our purebred male Collie 9 month old "puppy" who is over 75 lbs. Bert will eat anything that sits still long enough.
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  #11  
Old 01-28-2010, 11:31 PM
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Wow...picky eaters does not mean they are spoiled. It can mean many things. Some kids (like my 5 year old) cannot handle certain foods with mushy or slimy textures (such as eggs, mushy cereal, any casseroles, any cooked vegetables with sauces) and throws up at the table just watching someone eat things.
It can take up to 20-30 times of presenting a child with a new food before they will even venture out to try it. It DOES NOT make them spoiled. I can't believe a child care provider would say that. Sure this might be the case in a few children, but not in the majority. Perhaps you should learn a bit about children before you decide to care for them or give advice about them.
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  #12  
Old 01-29-2010, 06:02 AM
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I understand what chickenhauler is saying. I have a child that supposedly has the same issue, he gags on certain foods. So he gets to choose what is for dinner. Sticks and sauce from pizza hut, McDonalds and mac and cheese are usually his choice so they have that the majority of the nights. He is now 8, that is spoiled.

If a child really had that problem then yes, there would be some things they truely can not eat. But when we by federal law have to serve so many items, there should be 1 or 2 things they are able to eat. If they refuse to eat any of them, yes spoiled. This child mentioned was spoiled when he came. I gave him the try it attitude and the well that's all there is to eat today and he has tried so many foods over the last couple of years.
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Old 01-29-2010, 07:55 AM
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I do not force the child to try what is on their plate. Now my own kids...One of my daughters will say she doesnt like something before trying it so I tell her to just try it and 9 times out of 10 she DOES like it! But for the daycare kids I encourage, but dont make them try it. When I was a kid people would try to make me try things (not may parents) and it made me very upset. If I didnt want to eat it I WASN'T GOING TO! LOL!
My point is, it is my job to provide a nutritious meal. It is their job to choose what and how much of it to eat.
That said, I do not offer an alternate food. Eat what you like and leave what you dont.

I do have a child with a gag problem. He has since he was a baby. But, I did not cater to it. Even as an older baby/toddler I helped him to "work through it" "chew it up and swallow" and belive it or not he rarely gags on food anymore. Just because a child has a hard time with something (even a physical thing like that) doesnt necessarily mean we should just give up and say "well you always gag on food so you can eat whatever you want".(Like mac and Cheese, McDonalds, and Pizza Hut)
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Old 01-29-2010, 09:00 AM
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I dont offer anything different. If they are hungry they will eat what you offer. If they do not eat lunch I will not give them alot of snack to fill up on cuz they did not eat at lunch time but if they ate well at lunch time & will let them have 2nds if they want. Parents may give in & make them something different but I will not that here.
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Old 01-29-2010, 09:04 AM
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The moto around here, and elsewhere I am sure, is "you get what you get and you don't throw a fit" I prepare one meal, and one meal only. There is always a portion of the meal that they will eat generally. Rarely have i ever had someone who wouldn't eat a thing they were offered. All my families know that it is there child's choice rather to eat or not. Many kids are only given junk food, and daycare may be the only place they are offered a well balanced meal. So they may not like it, but it is there choice to try it or not.
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Old 01-29-2010, 09:05 AM
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Originally Posted by tymaboy View Post
I dont offer anything different. If they are hungry they will eat what you offer. If they do not eat lunch I will not give them alot of snack to fill up on cuz they did not eat at lunch time but if they ate well at lunch time & will let them have 2nds if they want. Parents may give in & make them something different but I will not that here.
I give half the snack I normally would as well. Some children will not eat lunch to hold out on snack because it is better. If I constantly struggle with a child I will put the lunch in the fridge for snack.
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Old 01-29-2010, 09:09 AM
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I give half the snack I normally would as well. Some children will not eat lunch to hold out on snack because it is better. If I constantly struggle with a child I will put the lunch in the fridge for snack.
THat lunch thing, in the fridge is a good one. Does he eat it then? I don't have any child, not eat at the dinnertable, they usually scarf down everything here, so I haven't had to deal with that in a long time!!
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Old 01-29-2010, 09:15 AM
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I give the normal snack no matter what they ate for lunch. I don't really think it is right to only give them half the snack just because they didnt like their lunch or to save their lunch for snack. If they didnt want it when it was fresh, they sure arent going to want it when its not! If they dont want to eat their lunch and can hold out for snack...more power to 'em.
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Old 01-29-2010, 09:38 AM
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THat lunch thing, in the fridge is a good one. Does he eat it then? I don't have any child, not eat at the dinnertable, they usually scarf down everything here, so I haven't had to deal with that in a long time!!
Yes, it took about a wk before she realized I wasn't going to play the same game mom did and she is now one of my best eaters. I gave her the normal adjustment period but then when she was eating a meal sized snack I stopped it. Snacks cost too much to make a meal out of it! I let mom know what I was doing as well so it's not like I did it behind their backs. I just told mom she is wasting too much lunch and then eating too much snack. She said to do what I thought was best!
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Old 01-29-2010, 09:43 AM
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I don't serve anything different either, I used to but learned quickly that wasn't a good thing to do. Like the others said my picky eater usually finds something else on the plate that they like fruit, yogurt or whatever and eat more of that, I try to encourage them to at least try it. If they dont' want it I always remind them snack isn't for quite awhile, they all really know not to complain. I have one boy who used to love pizza subs then all of a sudden a month ago he wont eat them. I had a parent who put on her contract that her daughter did not like bananas and if they do that I wont serve it to them and it wasn't that she didn't like them but the texture made her gag which I can understand because that's why I myself wont eat them. If a child is part time and I know they don't like something then I try not making it on the day they are here, but if they are here full time and it's the main dish they don't like I just try to make something else with it such as yogurt or a fruit they do like. I have one dcb right now who really eats almost nothing, at home his parents only give him chicken noodle soup because that's all he'll eat, mom told me upon starting that serve your normal stuff he'll hopefully learn, I do and although he still doens't eat much I have found things he will eat.
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Old 02-06-2010, 06:18 PM
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Wow...picky eaters does not mean they are spoiled. It can mean many things. Some kids (like my 5 year old) cannot handle certain foods with mushy or slimy textures (such as eggs, mushy cereal, any casseroles, any cooked vegetables with sauces) and throws up at the table just watching someone eat things.
It can take up to 20-30 times of presenting a child with a new food before they will even venture out to try it. It DOES NOT make them spoiled. I can't believe a child care provider would say that. Sure this might be the case in a few children, but not in the majority. Perhaps you should learn a bit about children before you decide to care for them or give advice about them.
Your kid is spoiled.

Picky eaters are spoiled. They've been fed their "favorites" their whole existence because mommy and daddy cater to their every whim, and worship the ground that their little snot nosed prince or princess walks upon.

The fact that your child "throws up at the table just watching someone eat things" just proves the point. Watching someone eat noodles makes your kid ill? Life's gonna suck for this kid.

Last edited by Michael; 02-06-2010 at 08:03 PM.
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