Whether you’re just starting out with introducing solids to your little one, or you’ve been at it a while, meal times can become a bit of a nightmare for some parents. From fussy eaters, to throwing food, to downright refusal to get in the highchair, toddlers love to keep us on our toes. Here are three useful tips that can help make mealtimes easier.
Tip #1 - ROUTINE
Children seem to like predictability, so a meal time routine can help your child know what to expect. If, every morning you put your child in the high chair after you’ve given them a milk feed, then that is what they’ll come to expect. They may not like it every time, but children tend to cope better with things they know are coming
Tip #2 - VERBAL WARNING
Even when you have a routine, it doesn’t hurt to let your littlie know what your about to do. For example, when you’re having a cuddle in the bed after their morning milk feed, let them know that in five minutes you’re all going to get up to have breakfast and they’ll be going in the highchair. Sounding excited about it can also add to the positivity associated with it.
At first they may not understand, but remember children’s vocabulary comprehension is developing rapidly at this age, so they will soon learn key words. And, they also pick up on our tone of voice and facial expressions, so that’s something to keep in mind.
Tip #3 - AVOID TOYS AND TELEVISION
Allowing your child to play with toys while they are eating may not only present a health risk, but it can also lead to more dramas. They may think it’s fun to dip the toy in the food and then throw it across the room just to see it fly. While you may want to encourage your child to explore their food, you want to distinguish between toy playtime and meal time.
TV and screens can also be something that can end up causing more problems. Your child may become so engrossed in the screen that they forget their food and lose interest in eating.
The beauty of restricting these distractions is that when you’re really stuck and absolutely need some help, you can have them in your bag of tricks. And, they will work a treat. The reason why they will work is because your child is not dependent on them. It’s a novelty and, therefore, it may just be the thing to keep them peaceful and calm. But, beware you don’t rely on them and make them part and parcel of every meal time.
Final Tip - MAKE LIFE EASIER
Grab one of our Japoodah weaning bibs! You will save hours of cleaning time every week! Plus, you’ll feel more relaxed about your child exploring their food and making a mess.
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