When my kids got their school forms and fees package in the mail each summer, I just wanted to crawl in a hole and ignore the whole thing! Getting ready for a new school year, and new teachers is not fun!
For a child who requires extra attention because of being gluten-free and/or casein free can cause more stress! Here I’m going to try to make this Back to School process a little bit easier!
The key to making your child’s needs work is COMMUNICATION!
Start with writing a letter to the teacher. I will give you a sample form letter you may use, or to give you and idea of what to write to the teacher.
My child has some dietary restrictions and special needs. Please share this information with anyone who will be working with my child in your classroom.
[Child] has a gluten-free, casein-free diet, which means no foods or snacks that include grains, including wheat, barley, rye and oats, as well as milk-based (cows or goats) dairy products. For more information, the best resource for this diet is http://www.gfcfdiet.com/. They have a good list of acceptable items.
We will provide all snacks for [child], as well as any birthday or holiday treats. We will also provide substitutes for Play Doh and any food that is needed for art and craft projects. We request at least two day’s notice so we can prepare what is needed.
If you would like to keep something on hand that [child] can have, here are some suggestions:
• Any fresh fruits except strawberries
• Skittles or Gummies
• 100% juice bars or popsicles
• Envirokids Berry cereal bars
• Corn or Rice pasta for crafts
For drinks we prefer water, but also use 100% fruit juice. Rice and almond milk are also good substitutes.
We would appreciate you making our child’s dietary restrictions known to the other students in the classroom, and emphasize the importance of not sharing their food with [child]. For any questions or concerns please contact us. [Insert personal contact information here.] We are looking forward to working with you this school year.
Labels: You can make or buy labels, stickers and patches that say “gluten-free,” “casein-free,” and other things such as “egg-free.” A good place to look is at Jeeto!. . . Put labels on lunchboxes, backpacks, and even coats and jackets. You can laminate them and use a ring to attatch them.
Your Child and Awareness: Make sure your children understand their diet restrictions. My granddaughter asks everyone who offers her food or candy, “Is it gluten-free?” Since not everyone knows what that means, she is also trained to explain that it’s wheat, or anything with flour. As she learns more, she adds to her conversations about the food that she is offered. It’s amazing how fast other kids catch on too. There have been times when she is offered something, and her friends say “No! She can’t eat that!”
That’s it – for my Back to School posts! Wishing you all a very happy and safe school year