Usually it's individual items being taken from the lunchbox, mostly at lunchtime at the table, although the entire lunchbox was stolen from the cafeteria as well once or twice. She started saving all of her trash until the end and throwing it all away at the end. Additionally, she has gotten permission to keep her lunchbox in her backpack until lunchtime instead of putting it in the cafeteria with all of the others. Her most "healthy - looking" (i.e not as much fun) items usually get left alone, but making it all look boring makes her less likely to want to eat it even if it's more likely to be there when she's ready for it. Also, having to save her Babybel cheeses and the fruits she gets to pick out for herself until after school seems like a punishment to her. She works so hard to earn the right to choose her lunch snacks at the grocery store and I don't want to undermine that privileged if I don't have to. Packing a spare sandwich that will keep all day separate from her lunchbox is a good idea, her backpack has an insulated pocket on the front just large enough for a sandwich and sliced fruit.
Wow! Tough question. I think you are doing the right thing working with the school staff. Do you send her lunch in a lunch box? If so, are they taking the food out of the lunch box? Are you packing foods that require refrigeration, or could she put a peanut butter sandwich in a backpack separate from her lunch box?
I started packing healthy lunches that my daughter adores, but it seems the other kids do too. She often complains that her lunch items are stolen when she gets up to throw something away or turns her back on her lunch. I'm working with the school staff to find out who is doing this, but how can I help her avoid the frustration and get a full, healthy meal every day?
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