Yes toddlers are using The Eating Game! The first of 5 age based meal planning charts is for 2 – 3 year olds. Of course the major advantage is going to be that a young child is learning healthy eating habits early enough to hopefully avoid becoming a picky eater! That in itself would be a huge plus. I believe that a certain number, perhaps a good percentage, of picky eaters are kids who learn that they can be in control using food. Gaining control in your environment is something all kids seek and it is part of normal growth. The key is to allow them to have control while guiding for good choices – often not an easy task!

So The Eating Game was developed with “control” in mind. The way it works is that parents present ample choices and the child is in control of making the choices – they love this! They will be making good choices because the meal planning chart they use requires that they do as they match 4 colors!

The only 2 skills needed to use The Eating Game independently(with the parent present) are: 1) being able to make a choice 2) matching the 4 colors: blue, red, yellow and green. If your child has fine motor delays some assistance may be required.

Using The Eating Game every day to plan healthy meals provides opportunities for growth in other areas of development:

  • language development: learning the names of colors and foods, food groups, meals and snacks, listening and following directions,
  • speech: practicing saying the names of foods, asking and responding to questions
  • practicing skills of sorting and matching as well as following a schedule
  • fine motor skills: picking up food pictures and sticking them on the meal planning charts (vecro buttons)
  • developing a daily routine of planning healthy meals which can be done 1 meal/snack at a time and eventually planning the whole day for tomorrow.
  • helps to develop an inderstanding of serving sizes and portion control that will perhaps avoid overeating and unneccessary weight gain while ensuring a good nutrition.

The Eating Game was named “a game” by the child it was invented for, as he said “because it is fun!” Learning for young children should always be fun. With this game they win ever time they play too! they will hopefully gain skills that will last them a lifetime.

To see how The Eating Game works go to an album on The Eating Game Page in Photos “How The Eating Game Works” in photos and captions.

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Jean
Jean
Jean Nicol was a Special Education Teacher who after 10 years of retirement continues to be a very passionate autism advocate especially in the international autism community via social media. In 1970 Jean began her working career as a Home Economics Teacher after completing a BSc in Nutrition at St Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia. Four years later she completed her BEd and began teaching elementary school where she quickly found her calling in Special Education and completed the Post Grad Special Education Program at Ottawa University. This was the beginning of a very rewarding 20 years in special education; with a desire to learn as much as she could about autism working with many children from preschool age to teenagers and young adults, as a teacher and community volunteer. Jean ended her working career as an Autism Consultant in the local public schools for 2 years. Then all of her education and work experience came together to keep her very busy in her retirement with her invention. During early retirement Jean worked part time as an Early Interventionist in a home visit play centered program for preschoolers with developmental delays. While doing this a friend asked for help in addressing the eating challenges of her six year old autistic son. Jean responded with enthusiasm and created what would become The Eating Game. This program was so successful Jean decided that her time would be well spent creating more of The Eating Game to help so many children with ASD who often deal with eating challenges. Her venture began with a small home business, EYECAN CREATIONS Jean Nicol was a Special Education Teacher who after 10 years of retirement continues to be a very passionate autism advocate especially in the international autism community via social media. In 1970 Jean began her working career as a Home Economics Teacher after completing a BSc in Nutrition at St Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia. Four years later she completed her BEd and began teaching elementary school where she quickly found her calling in Special Education and completed the Post Grad Special Education Program at Ottawa University. This was the beginning of a very rewarding 20 years in special education; with a desire to learn as much as she could about autism working with many children from preschool age to teenagers and young adults, as a teacher and community volunteer. Jean ended her working career as an Autism Consultant in the local public schools for 2 years. Then all of her education and work experience came together to keep her very busy in her retirement with her invention. During early retirement Jean worked part time as an Early Interventionist in a home visit play centered program for preschoolers with developmental delays. While doing this a friend asked for help in addressing the eating challenges of her six year old autistic son. Jean responded with enthusiasm and created what would become The Eating Game. This program was so successful Jean decided that her time would be well spent creating more of The Eating Game to help so many children with ASD who often deal with eating challenges. Her venture began with a small home business, EYECAN CREATIONS Publications and grew in seven years to now proudly display 2 Eating Game Patents, Canadian and American! Eating Game product development continues to play a role as Jean helps parents and children internationally. Every day is an adventure online meeting and helping friends in the global autism community with eating issues and many other concerns related to autism. Jean believes that key issues in helping children with autism relate to communication and social skill development. She is always ready to help parents work out ways to support their children, to give them “a voice” using visual supports, including social stories. Making a difference in the lives of children with autism and their families makes daily life worthwhile and very rewarding for Jean Nicol. The Eating Game website http://www.theeatinggame.ca/ Twitter https://twitter.com/TheEatingGame Facebook https://www.facebook.com/jean.nicol1 Facebook https://www.facebook.com/TheEatingGame Google+ https://plus.google.com/u/1/+JeanNicolTheEatingGame/posts LinkedIn http://www.linkedin.com/in/jeannicol Pinterest http://www.pinterest.com/theeatinggame/ Pinterest http://www.pinterest.com/jeannicol/

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