Episode #90 Interview with Food Explorer Club App Creator Kassady Gibson

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Kassady Gibson with the Food Explorer Club shares about their new app that helps picky eaters explore new food options.

David and Kassady are parents to Ree and Ali (now 11 and 8 years old) and are the creators of the Food Explorer Club app. Their girls were incredibly picky eaters as younger children and the app was invented one Saturday morning in an effort to get Ali to try a banana. They quickly learned this was an invasive problem among parents and children and set out to change the way children think about food and give parents a way to make trying new foods fun.

Kids earn badges & points as they try new foods and continue to eat the ones you want them to eat.

It’s worked for our family and we are sure it will work for yours!

Learn more at www.foodexplorerclub.com, and download today in the App Store or Google Play.

It’s FREE!

Automatic Transcription from Otter.ai

app, badge, fun, parents, picky eaters, work, child, food, banana, eat, feeding, explorer, families, awesome, earn, incorporate, grow, laffy taffy, points, snowballed

Hey everybody, welcome back to another episode of the autism and action podcast today we have another very special guest. We've got Miss Cassie Gibson, she is the co founder of the food explorer club. And I can't wait for her to share with you all about what they've put together and have available for your families. Cassie, welcome to the show. Thank you so much for taking the time to be here today.

Thank you so much. We're so excited to be here and tell everybody a little bit about our new app. Well, if

you will just share away what is the food explorer club.

So you know how many parents struggle with picky eaters we did. And we just really wanted the time that we had to spend together as a family at dinner to be fun and not fighting over broccoli. And so we created an app using like a, we came up with this fun idea one morning with our girls to actually try to get them to eat a banana. So my youngest, she just wouldn't do it. And we were like, come on Ali, just just try it just you can have a banana badge if you eat it. And then my husband said yes, you can be part of the food explorer club. And so from that little idea, she actually tried the banana. And then my other daughter actually tried same in that same day, we were like, wow, this is really interesting. And so we came up with a concept of, of this app and built it out. And we started testing it with lots of families. And it just worked and has snowballed and grown into something that's really been changing people's lives. So really what the app is, is that it's a really fun gamified way for kids to try new foods, and to continue to eat the ones that are good for them. Because we know, if they just start maybe even if they eat a banana Laffy Taffy, then eventually they're going to trap banana pie, or banana bread, or banana bread and then eventually start eating the bananas. And so we know that that continued exposure is so good for them. So they earn those points and badges when they do and they can turn in those points for prizes. And they don't necessarily have to be like dessert, which they could be. But it could also be action based things like going to the park, when that's really really popular is getting to sit and dad's chair at dinner, which I think is. So it's just been so neat to see like one parent that they have kids that are like 1012 13. And it's really designed for like two to eight year olds, but she's found a fun way to for it to work for them. And they, she gives them money to buy stocks. So

that's very awesome.

So it's just a depends on what drives your child like things that they love, is, you know, a reward based system and a really, really fun way.

I absolutely love this. And I can't wait to dive in and use the app myself with our our little eight year old, because he is a very picky eater. Now, this is a great way to figure out what motivational currencies work for your children as well. Absolutely. All of those things that you just listed are completely outside the box, I would have never thought of those five stocks or sit in that chair at dinner time. So that that is awesome. That is so awesome. Now, where's the best place for families to find the app.

So that it's free on the App Store and the Google Play Store. And you can use it on your device, whatever device you have, we really recommend that parents download it and you can use the same email account. So you have the set, you know the child's information on on both both parents accounts or even your caregivers as well.

Awesome. Now, you said it's designed for two to eight, but it seems to work well also for the younger adolescent going into those early tween years. Is there anything else that our listeners should know about the food explorer club. So we're

at the time of this recording, we're about to roll out a new version of the app, which it should be live by then. But it's going to have a great a great feature and other really plays along with ABA feeding therapy. And so you'll be able to actually share that your child's profile with your feeding therapist or pediatrician or whoever you may be working with to help with different feeding difficulties you might have right now. And it's just a great way to keep everybody on the same page. And you can also you'll also be able to switch between using the point system to a star based system. And so if your child does better bad earning stars instead of points then that's just another way to help. We'll also be including things like challenges. So you can earn the 2d Fruity badge if you eat and eat a certain number of fruits, and we'll keep adding to those to make it more fun and engaging for the kids. But it even has, we're having badges in there that's like if you leave food on the plate, or even touch it to your mouth, like they were trying to incorporate those things that we know that really help with exposure. And so it's not, we really just want it to be a fun way of fading instead of there being the pressure behind it. Absolutely. So and there's also fun things in there, like the chef badge, so if they want to get in the kitchen and maybe try some things out, or if there's a farmer badge, so if they maybe want to grow some different foods and things like that.

See, this is not only encouraging them to really put forth the effort and just trying right exposing to new things, but accomplishments along the way, and then also incorporating different areas as well. Farming, growing, cooking, you know, getting more active with food. So that's really awesome. That's really,

and it's designed to be very quick. So it's all in the parents app, it takes maybe two minutes to do it. So it's super, super fast. It's not going to be a big imposition in your day, because I know I mean, I'm busy, I don't have time to add a whole extra layer on to things. So we just want to keep it really, really quick and simple, but something that's gonna make a big impact on people's lives. So

well, you guys have done something absolutely incredible. I know that a lot of us parents out there really need help with our picky eaters and trying to get them to open up their palates and have willingness to try new things. And you have a great tool to help with that. So thank you for coming up with something so amazing.

Oh, well, thank you so much. We've had fun doing it.

Well, thank you again for taking the time to be here today. You guys go to the Play store checkout food explorer club. I think that you guys also have a website where what is your website?

It's food explorer club.com And you can find us on Facebook and Instagram there as well.

All right, go check it out, guys.

Let's Discuss!

Now, we would love to hear from you.

Do you have questions? Do you have ideas? Do you have an opinion? Do you think we missed something?

Let's have a discussion in the comments below or head over to the Autism in Action Facebook group. We would love to hear from you!

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