I have a four year old in a very small pre-school three days a week. They feed him lunch while he is there, and although they try to provide a healthy lunch, they often prepare meat for the kids. Is there a way to talk to them about our family diet without upsetting someone? I would hate for him to be the only child that brought his own lunch! Or should I just let it go? Thanks for any advise you might have!
i think that at a young age, kids should be exposed to meat. they are growing and need all of the nutrients. one meal a day won't be so bad if you want him to be vegan. however if you really want him to remain vegan or vegetarian, then perhaps you can provide them with food that looks like the other kids yet is meat free, this way he can eat with all the other kids and not bring a lunch, yet is following your diet. good luck.
Check with the director at your pre-school about what alternatives they can offer or if you can provide his meals. I have noticed that there are several children at my son's pre-school with specific dietary restrictions. One little guy has only organic food and his mom brings in organic milk and lunches each week, they label it with his name and that's what he gets at snack and meal time.
If you are committed to having your child be vegan, then pack his lunch in a cool bento lunch set like Laptop Lunches or some of the other sets out there. Then he will be the envy of all the other kids! It really just comes down to how you feel about him eating meat...
Thank you guys for the great advise! I am so sorry that it took me so long to respond back. Life is so crazy for us right now. I have had no time to get online and see what responses I had gotten.
Scarlette - You are probably right, and he has been eating the lunches there. I only want what is best for him, and when I look around at what some of the other kids eat I think "Wow, we are not doing too bad". I do not think that one meal a day could do too much damage, but I do know that there are harsh chemicals and antibiotics in meat products, and I think that I would rather him be vegan now, while his body is still growing, than later on in his life. He already seems to have a sluggish immune system and I am hoping that our vegan change will help that.
Joanne, Veggiemom - what a great idea about the lunches! Maybe I could even bring them in just a few days a week, or days when I know they are not eating something nutritious. Good idea - thanks!
Heather - Great website! I will be sure to pass it on to my friends. Thanks!
It can be hard sometimes to make decisions in a world that clearly doesn't cater to a vegan diet. For every occasion at my girls schools, (one in preschool, one in kindergarten), they serve cupcakes,, pizza, all kinds of goods we dont have. I just do my very best, and when these situations come up, I just let my kids enjoy the occasion with the rest of the kids. For instance, my kindergarteners class just earned a pizza party. I just let my daughter go and enjoy it, and asked her if she had a good time at the party. I would not at this point send a note in saying that she couldn't participate. I just try to do my best at teaching my kids to function and make the best decisions they can in a very nonvegan world. It can be hard, some people may dissagree or do things differently than me but its what I feel best about. As my kids get older they will understand a little more and will be able to choose whether they want to eat it or not. :But in our home we just keep it consistantly vegan and healthy. :) So those items do not get into their bodies often.
I know this is an old thread, but I'm just navigating the site. We have used the laptop lunch boxes for a few years and love them. My kiddo's preschool/elmentary requires we bring our own food so it isn't an odd thing there. But he was the only with a Bento type lunch. And one of the only Vegetarians.
I still would have prepared his meals even if they didn't require it though. What I've done from a very young age (3ish), was ask him to tell me if he saw something another child was eating that he really wanted to try. Then we'd come up with an alternative together.
Like I made him Vegan corn dogs once for example when he came home wanting what his friend had. Doing this has saved us lots of tears, and he's never felt like he was missing out on anything.
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