Teaching Vegan Children - My Vegan Child
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Teaching Vegan Children

Inclusive Teaching of Vegan Children

Living Vegan means practicing an ethical belief of veganism. In New Zealand, Ethical beliefs are protected by the Human Rights Act 1993, and most other countries too.

 

Please respect our child’s veganism as if it were a different culture or set of values. Veganism is more than a diet, it is a way of living that values all animals as beings that deserve to live free from harm.

 

The following suggestions may help you provide an inclusive learning environment for vegan children.

vegan kids students
Baking and Food in Schools
  • Vegan options and substitutions are much appreciated so our children are included.
  • Consider using the vegan option as a standard ingredient/option for all.
  • Please don’t make a big deal out of our child having a different option. If it comes up, use it as a starting point for positive conversations.
  • If you would like us to bring in a vegan option or vegan ingredients, we are more than happy to do this, please just ask.
  • Vegan options in school lunches and fundraiser events are much appreciated and we are happy to help with this, e.g. sausage sizzles, bake sales. Please do not offer our children non vegan food.
  • More information on what vegan kids eat and vegan nutrition for kids
Science and Inquiry
  • Help our child and their peers look into how animal agriculture is affecting the environment.
  • Dissection – our child will not participate in any dissection of animals. There is technology available to us today that makes corpse dissection obsolete. More info and links under Classroom Resources.
  • Nutrition/diet – Please support our child in exploring what a well balanced vegan diet consists of. (e.g fruits and vegetables, grains, plant proteins, carbohydrates)
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my vegan child
Literacy
  • Reading. Please be mindful of the reading material our vegan child is made to read. Our children have compassion for all animals and may find it upsetting reading about fishing, hunting or animals being killed for food. When the child does read these books, they may want to explore how this might conflict with their values and knowledge, e.g. what really happens to animals on farms, how it makes them feel, etc
  • Older students may want to incorporate their passion for animal rights when learning to communicate in today’s democratic environment, such as letter-writing, petitioning, creating awareness material using print and video media, and fundraising.
School Outings

Vegans do not choose to support animal exploitation in any form and so generally avoid visiting zoos or aquariums, or taking part in events using animals as entertainment (rodeo etc). A great alternative is observing animals and wildlife in their natural habitats, or visiting and supporting animal sanctuaries that provide safe and loving homes for rescued animals.

 

We acknowledge that any outdoors outing can be a positive experience though, such as farm visits. So if our children are attending on such a visit, we ask that teachers be mindful of our child’s beliefs and empathy – e.g. not harming or exploiting animals in front of them (possum or rabbit killing, milking) or showing them dead carcasses, nor normalising/justifying any animal harm.

my vegan child school
my vegan kids teach
Pest Control & Conservation

Different vegan viewpoints on this range from ‘doing the least harm’ to ‘doing no harm’. The ‘Compassionate Conservation’ approach is most in line with vegan values (e.g. using infertility bait/darts or trap and release).

 

In school situations, please be aware that the killing of pests will offend and sadden vegan children, e.g. school possum/rabbit hunts or mice trap experiments.

General

Our child may want to start or join an Animal Rights group within the school.

We appreciate positive conversations within the classroom on veganism. If our child is open to it, they could lead a Q&A session with their class, or help explore What is Vegan? with their classmates.

Any questions please don’t hesitate to ask!

 

For lesson ideas, links, videos and vegan friendly activities check out our Classroom Resources