Eating by themselves

Christine - posted on 08/24/2010 ( 18 moms have responded )

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My son is 13 months. Should he be eating with utensils by himself by now? He is great with finger foods and I'm trying to get him to eat with a spoon but he is nowhere near being a pro. I'm just wondering how much I should push it and if anyone has any tips on how to teach him.

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Carla - posted on 08/27/2010

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Girls are usually better and earlier with this than boys, but don't worry, and don't push. Give him a spoon and some thing that is both finger and baby sized spoon with a big easy grip. (Don't forget to put the big plastic drop cloth underlet him watch big folks eat. Don't worry about the spoon if he is on target with other development,

Lisa - posted on 08/27/2010

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Eating with utensils? My 14 month-old is barely eating with his fingers. My little prince prefers to be fed :) I think utensils will give you a drum to listen to.

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I believe in always assisting your child, until he/she is ready to do anything- eating is the same as learning to ride a bike: Accidents happen, bad habits remain, when things are not learned properly. So show them how to do things right. They have all their life to learn, so plenty of time. God bless you!

Joan - posted on 08/26/2010

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My son is almost two and he still can't use utensils that well. He's pretty accurate, but often food falls off the spoon. I wouldn't worry. Just give him the spoon to keep practising. It'll probably take quite a long time for him to get the hang of it. Fine motor skills are very difficult for little ones to "perfect". He will get around to it when he is ready. Meanwhile just let him have fun experimenting. :)

Brittany - posted on 08/24/2010

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We actually started my son with a fork. I figure it's easier because the food (usually) doesn't fall off. He still has issues with stabbing the food but he's getting pretty good at it. I just held his hand and helped him until he could do it by himself.

Teresa - posted on 08/24/2010

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he should be able to eat with a spoon by the age of two, with a little help fom time to time.I hope this helps.

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He's doing fine! When my daughter was first learning to use the spoon, I would mix her applesauce with oatmeal cereal to make it thicker. It wouldn't fall off the spoon and make as big of a mess.

Nikki - posted on 08/24/2010

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My son always eats with his hands he is 14 months, but we brought him to daycare the other day to intro him and all the kids were playing with spoons and he wanted one too, most of the kids there were 17-18months and none of them had mastered utensils, but now what my son does is he holds the spoon in one hand and picks up the food with the other then puts it in the spoon to feed himself, he gets it in a few time, but misses most of it, its ultra cute

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My 2.5 year old does pretty good most of the time (neater than his 3.5 year old cousin half the time), but he still prefers his fingers a lot. So did his sisters at that age.

Just let him have the utensils at every meal to practice and he'll get it when he's ready.

Renae - posted on 08/24/2010

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No most 13 month olds are still learning to use utensils. 18 months to 2 years is when they really get the hang of it. Most kids prefer to use their fingers if allowed to until about 4 years old.

Just give him his own spoon or fork while you are feeding him and let him try to use it. You can start by putting the food on the utensil and letting him try to get it in his mouth, then after a few months when he can get his mouth let him try to get the food on it himself. Stabbing things with a fork is much less messy than spooning food because they usually turn the spoon upside down and it falls everywhere (babies find it easier to get the food off the spoon in their mouth when its upside down). It just takes time, no need to push it, he will get it.

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my so is 1 year and i give them to him but most of te time he just uses is ands. if i give him a full spoon he can usually get it to his mouth ok, but he cant fill it himself and get it to his mouth

Emily - posted on 08/24/2010

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Definitely not something that needs to be mastered any time soon. Don't push it. He'll get it when he's ready. Children that age are driven by intrinsic desire to learn independence.. but at their own pace. He'll learn by watching you and by practice. Just give him a set and he'll figure it out when he's ready.

Aliska - posted on 08/24/2010

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Let him have a go but it will take a while for him to be able to feed himself well. Put his meal into two bowls, give him one so he can practise with the spoon and in between times feed him yourself from the other, even if he doesn't get much of the food from his bowl into his mouth he's still getting what's in yours. He'll learn in time.

Medic - posted on 08/24/2010

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I would not stress at all....as long as the food gets to his mouth why stress...my almost 4 year old can use them and use them really well but half the time "forgets" as long as they are are using them in public by like 2.5-3 and are decent at it I personally think its ok.

Tiffany - posted on 08/24/2010

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My son who is now about to be 3 mastered it, and i mean mastered it, no spilling off the spoon or fork at 11 months old. It shocked everyone. Yet my daughter who will be 12 months in a couple weeks has not even learned what the pourpose in a fork or spoon is. lol. We eat lots of hamburgers and chicken sands and lots of food you dont need forks for so I guess since she dont see us use them much she figures "Hey why should I?" lol. I wouldnt worry about it. All though my son mastered it at 11 months and wouldnt eat with his hands at all, he is now useing his hads for every type of food there is. He cant stand to eat with a fork or spoon. So i wouldnt push it unless you just want him to, other than just wanting him to, there isnt really any need for him to. hope this helps.

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I always give my baby a spoon/fork to eat with. She doesn't always use it, but it gives her practice.

Katie - posted on 08/24/2010

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My daughter is 21 months and she isn't a pro. she does pretty good with most foods except for soup but LOVES to dig in her bowl to feel the food so I know she isn't even close to being ready full on by herself.

But if they are hungry they will get that food in their mouth so don't worried about that.

September - posted on 08/24/2010

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It helps to let him practice with each meal but by no means does he need to be a pro at 13 months. Our son started using utensils when he was around 11 months but did not master it until about 15 months. He'll get the hang of it when's he's ready. :)

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