Monday, November 28, 2022

5 Tips That Help Daycare Teachers Handle Picky Eaters

In the daycare setting, it is important to help picky eaters overcome their reluctance as early as possible. To that end, there are some effective ideas used by daycare teachers that encourage eating-- or at least tasting-- a wider variety of foods.

1. Meal Preparation

Food can take on a whole new appeal when children are involved in preparing it. Montessori daycare children are more than capable of learning to set the table, wash vegetables, slice soft foods, measure, and pour. Participating in the food prep is also a big boost to each child's self-esteem, allowing them to be big helpers. You can reinforce the feeling of a job well done by commenting about how the food smells delicious, is making you hungry, etc.

2. Low Stress

Trying to force small children to eat will only make them more resistant. A better idea would be to put a few food items on a small plate and set it within easy reach of the picky eater. Having a selection available for snacking at will is often the easiest way to get picky eaters to eat. Remember that not all foods remain palatable for long periods, and include nutritious snacks and fruits like grapes that are appealing to children.

3. Variety

Variety is the spice of life, and picky eaters respond well to having a choice of foods to eat. Additionally, setting up a mini-buffet gives the meal a more festive feel and makes children feel like they are part of a larger event. This also helps encourage picky eaters because they are witnessing what the other children are choosing and enjoying.

4. Role Modeling

Your own eating habits will influence the way your children eat. You are an important role model in her life, and when she sees you favoring a food item she will be curious about it. On the flip side, if your daughter observes you refusing to eat certain things, she may not want to try them at all.

5. Inclusion

Ask your daughter to help you select items for dinner, or take her with you to the supermarket and let her pick a few items by herself. You may have to guide her toward healthier choices, but making choices for the whole family will make her feel like a more important part of the family, and that can build an appetite.

Dealing with picky eaters can be challenging, but it is a problem that will usually work itself out. In the end, hunger is a force that cannot be controlled, and even the pickiest eater will eventually decide that it is time to eat.

Author: verified_user