How to use the app
How it works
This post to gives you a step by step run through of how the Learn Play Eat app works with some screenshots and there’s a video below too if that’s easier 🙂
1.Choose and prepare your food Experiment
Open the app and select ‘Experiments’, tap Let’s start then select and Experiment. You’ll have access to the ‘Stick foods’ Experiment and if you upgrade you can get access to the 6 other Experiments. Each experiment has a group of similar foods to choose from, select 3 or 4 of these, starting with an ‘easy’ food first. Prepare these foods.
2.Learn and play with food
Time to get your little one involved! You can watch the video where Toby introduces the Experiment to your child, a little bit of peer modelling can go a long way 🙂 Then move on the the Experiment screen for your first food. Select some of the sense tiles to have Max the monkey suggest some questions and activities to do with your child. Each time you select a tile your child earns a point. Depending on how they react to the food select either Learner games or Expert games, Max will suggest games to do with your child. You can also use the camera to take photos of your child participating in the activities. You can then try again with other foods in the Experiment. Once you’re done you can download a certificate for your child to colour and they move up a level.
If you select the Progress section, you can see details of when you did each Experiment and how your child scored. We also have a food log showing which foods have been interacted with the most and a track of your goals. You could share this with family or health professionals.
Repeated positive and fun exposure is the key to start removing any phobias and ‘normalising’ food. We suggest starting off using the app to do one Experiment twice a week, with an Experiment taking around 15 minutes, and using 3 or 4 foods. You don’t need to complete all the activities in an Experiment, just the ones which seem fun that day, be lead by your child and their mood.
Things you might need
- 3 to 4 foods for the experiment you want to try
- Plates for you and your child
- Tongs, spoons, and other serving equipment
- For some of the activities, you can choose to use a toy car, measuring tape or ruler, or a clean paint brush
- Keep it all light-hearted and set aside 15 minutes when you won’t be disturbed
- Let your child select options within the app as much as possible (without harming your phone!).
- Have a plate for your child and a plate for the parent / carer to also do all the activities and eat.
- Start with something you think your child is more likely to be comfortable with.
- If they don’t want to do anything with that food it’s no problem. Just take things slowly and maybe come back to it another time!
- Cover the food with a napkin on the plate if the child won’t otherwise allow it on the plate.
- Touch it through a napkin or ziplock bag first if needed.
- A sound activity could be the noise it makes when it breaks or when you crunch it.
- Tasting can just entail licking, kissing or rubbing on the tongue.
- Let them know it’s OK to spit the food out if they want to.
- Use tools like cookie cutters and tongs to encourage participation.
- The sillier and more fun you can make the activities the better!