As the year races to an end, lots of parents are considering end of year gifts for teachers and classmates. One mum raised a common dilemma with us on Facebook, wondering how her daughter can share handmade treats while still being allergy-aware.
“My daughter is in Grade 3 and she’d love to hand out some homemade Christmas treats to her classmates and teachers this year,” she writes.
“We are keen to make these gifts allergy-friendly so that no-one misses out. We need some ideas! Can anyone share some inspo for a suitable homemade, edible gift that is egg/nut/gluten free?”
Our community of brilliant parents on Facebook had lots of helpful advice, and many congratulated this mum-daughter duo on their generous AND inclusive crafty nature.
Rethink foodie gifts
Lots of people suggested avoiding food altogether, but still going with the thoughtful handmade ethos.
“Instead of food why not make little salt dough ornaments? My son has several life-threatening allergies so any homemade items (even if they are presented as allergy-friendly) go in the bin. As a parent, there is no 100 percent way to know it’s safe for your child so we just don’t risk it. People who aren’t allergy-aware, even if their intentions are good, can accidentally cross contaminate things really easily. It’s just not worth the risk to us.” – Kim Donald
“Go with something non edible or prepackaged. As a child with severe food allergies, it’s unlikely I would just give him something without checking extremely closely with the maker of whatever it is.” – Belinda Milner
Switch it up
Some people suggested other thoughtful festive gifts.
“Why don’t you do little packets of reindeer food for the kids to sprinkle on the front lawn! That way no kids eat it! Google it – there are a million different ways to make it! Rolled oats, seeds, grains, glitter…etc.” – Kasey Zinghini
“Kmart have some super cute Christmas stationery! Most grade 3/4s I know are obsessed with stationery lol!” – Cyndilee Watson
Many parents posted a gentle reminder that schools have various rules around sharing food in class.
“Check with the office at her school first. Every school has different guidelines.” – Dorothy Pierce
“My kids school doesn’t allow homemade treats brought in. Only packaged store bought.” – Jamie Kensinger
That’s definitely food for thought, right?
We love the idea of handmade decorations as a much safer alternative.
You can read the original post and more answers from clever parents below.