When your Child’s Classmate has a Peanut Allergy

When your child is diagnosed with a peanut allergy panic sets in.

It’s overwhelming.

Organizing, informing, and educating seems endless, and in a way it is.

But there is another side to the allergy.

The classmates and friends that your child will go to school with, the families who do not have experience with food allergies, and the fear of the unknown.

Today I have Stacey from the Peanut Free Zone here to give some tips on dealing with a child who has a peanut allergy in the classroom.

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Have you just been introduced into the world of peanut allergies, and you’re wondering what to do?

Here are several ways you can help support a child with peanut allergies at daycare or school:

  • Don’t send any peanut products with your child. Read labels to see if the product contains peanuts, and if it does, save it for your child to eat at home instead. Also, it’s best avoid products that say they were made on the same equipment, etc.
  • Find out from the teacher or parent what safe snacks are allowed. I’m sure they’ll happily provide you with a list of snacks that are safe for their child. Make sure you ALWAYS read the label of the snacks before purchasing, because ingredients and manufacturing process sometimes change.
  • If you make something, and you know it’s safe….don’t send it in to the class. They won’t know if there was cross-contamination in your kitchen and the child won’t be able to eat it. (And it’s sad to see a child get excluded from what their classmates get to do).
  • Don’t send in anything from a bakery. Bakeries have a high chance of cross-contamination.
  • Teach your child not to share or trade food and drinks with their classmate.
  • Teach your child how to properly wash their hands after eating. If they eat any peanut products before school, make sure they wash their hands and clean their face.
  • Encourage your child to look after their classmate’s safety and tell an adult if their classmate feels ill.
  • Encourage your child to tell an adult if anyone is bullying or teasing their classmate because of their peanut allergy.
  • Help educate your child about peanut allergies, through books and videos.
  • Reach out to the parent. Sometimes they feel like they are all alone, and it will mean so much to hear an encouraging word and know that someone cares.

Thank you for taking the time to learn how you can help children with peanut allergies! For more tips, products and resources on peanut allergy safety, please visit us at www.peanutfreezone.com

Stacey has an M.A. in Education and is a fabulous resource on everything peanut free! I encourage you to visit her site for signage, lunch bags, stickers, tattoos, emergency plans, etc.

She’s also the featured expert at Ezine Articles where she talks about the importance of educating everyone on peanut and food allergies.

Thank you so much Stacey! It’s so important to educate everyone about food allergies and the dangers of ignoring them. I’m so glad you took the time to be here today.

To connect with Stacey please visit her Blog

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28 Responses to When your Child’s Classmate has a Peanut Allergy
  1. Alison@Mama Wants This
    March 2, 2012 | 4:39 am

    Great tips, Stacey!! Thank you for sharing.

    • Stacey
      March 2, 2012 | 4:25 pm

      Thank you Alison!

  2. Nic
    March 2, 2012 | 7:47 am

    Great tips!
    Many schools like my children’s offer a peanut free environment. They send home lists of items not allowed (may contain and names) and check all lunches in JK/SK/grade 1. They send a great flyer home to help parents With lunch options and is full of great ideas. The school does an amazing Job at helping to educate patents and children. 🙂

    • Stacey
      March 2, 2012 | 4:28 pm

      Wow – sounds like your children go to a great school!

  3. Jenny
    March 2, 2012 | 1:49 pm

    Thank you so much for this information. My oldest has a friend with a tree nut allergy. Should I follow the same recommendations as listed above for the peanut allergy? We want to set up a play date, but I don’t know how to prepare my home.

    • Stacey
      March 2, 2012 | 4:48 pm

      Thank you, Jenny! Yes, these can be used for other allergies too. For a play date at your home…if you want to have a snack, ask the parent what you should get or see if they would like to bring the food and you provide the drinks. I’d put away food items, wash the dishes, and clean the kitchen surfaces. They did a study on removing the allergen from tables and hands that you might find interesting…. http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/health/Peanut_Residue.html
      Also, check the label on the kitchen/bathroom soap!

  4. Kimberly
    March 2, 2012 | 1:54 pm

    I never really realized how severe this allergy is until my best friends sister had an anaphylactic shock with a very serious outcome. I get so angry when I hear parents complain about having to not pack lunches with any peanuts…if it was their kid, they’d want everyone to be vigilant.

    • Stacey
      March 2, 2012 | 4:57 pm

      I’m sorry to hear about your best friend’s sister. I so agree with you… and the best thing we can do is continue educating others.

    • multitaskingmumma
      March 8, 2012 | 11:02 pm

      Yer my boy BLUE!
      Thanks for being as awesome as you are and getting this!! xo

  5. Mama Track
    March 2, 2012 | 2:13 pm

    Great tips! Thanks, ladies! We also try to avoid taking peanuts to the park because you just never know.

    • Stacey
      March 2, 2012 | 5:00 pm

      Thanks for looking out for others!

      • multitaskingmumma
        March 8, 2012 | 11:03 pm

        Thank you so much Stacey, for taking the time to write this post and for educating others about peanut allergies and how they can avoid a reaction. It was so great having you here! You are always welcome.

  6. katery
    March 2, 2012 | 4:40 pm

    good to know, thanks for the info!

    • multitaskingmumma
      March 8, 2012 | 11:01 pm

      Thanks for reading Kate!!

  7. Kristin
    March 2, 2012 | 7:55 pm

    Great info! Our school doesn’t allow food for class distribution, ever.

    • multitaskingmumma
      March 8, 2012 | 11:00 pm

      The schools in our area doesn’t either.. I think that’s a good thing.

  8. Robin @ Farewell, Stranger
    March 2, 2012 | 8:46 pm

    Great tips! We’ve been around allergies all our lives, but it’s always good to be reminded, especially about things like peanuts.

    • multitaskingmumma
      March 8, 2012 | 11:00 pm

      That’s how I feel too Robin! You can never know too much.

  9. Rach (DonutsMama)
    March 2, 2012 | 9:56 pm

    Thanks for helping me be aware for other kids and telling me how I can help.

    • multitaskingmumma
      March 8, 2012 | 11:00 pm

      Thank you again for being so understanding and open minded Rach!

  10. Galit Breen
    March 2, 2012 | 11:08 pm

    Such great, important tips! Thank you both!

    • multitaskingmumma
      March 8, 2012 | 10:57 pm

      Thank you Galit!
      Such important things to know.

  11. Paula @lkg4sweetspot
    March 3, 2012 | 9:40 am

    Thank you for the tips! Each of my boys has a friend with a peanut allergy. Luckily, we live in a small community and it is very easy to get all parents to be wary of it and consider what they send to school, etc.

    • multitaskingmumma
      March 8, 2012 | 10:55 pm

      We live in a small community that is very understanding as well. We’re very lucky.

  12. Jessica
    March 4, 2012 | 5:21 pm

    Thank you for sharing the tips. I haven’t had to worry about a child in my daughter’s class having a peanut allergy yet but I’m sure one day in the future I will have to.

    • multitaskingmumma
      March 8, 2012 | 10:54 pm

      Thanks Jessica! It’s really important for all parents to communicate and share ideas to keep kids safe. I appreciate your being open to learning.

  13. peanutallergy
    March 6, 2012 | 9:18 am

    peanutallergy is my fav topic. Thanks for sharing information on that issue. Thanks, Nadine 🙂

    • multitaskingmumma
      March 8, 2012 | 10:33 pm

      Thank you for reading!

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