Teaching Your Baby to Eat Independently

When your babies are little, they depend on you to feed them every day, but as they get older, we have to teach kids to fend for themselves in the cafeteria (unless you want to be the mom who shows up at lunchtime with a bib and baby feeding bowls). To make sure your child is school lunch ready, he or she will need to have the types of baby bibs, baby plates, bowls and utensils which are the safest and most durable.

Parents spend enough time making sure that only the healthiest ingredients are going into their children’s mouths, so you don’t want to inadvertently feed your baby anything harmful by using utensils that contain chemicals. At SOOJIN, we wouldn’t dream of putting anything into our utensils that you wouldn’t want in your baby’s mouth. Here are some of the equipment we look for when we’re teaching babies to eat by themselves.

 

Best Forks and Spoons

At about 6 months, you’ll begin introducing your child to solid food, and to the child, all food is finger food. You’ll probably see your child shovel up as much food as can be held in his or her hand and then try to shove their whole hand in their mouths. This may accomplish the task, but not very neatly or efficiently.

Eventually, you will move onto spoons, and the best way to teach your child to use spoons is by giving them some hands-on experience. That means giving your child its own spoon while you feed it. This will help baby make the connection between food and eating and also work on the development of fine motor skills. In time, you will notice the baby putting the spoon in its mouth on its own, which is a sign that he is starting to get the right idea. Encourage this behavior if you see it.

After baby makes the spoon-mouth connection, put your hand over his and dip it into the food, start with small amounts to keep the mess to a minimum. If all goes well, your baby will be spooning over its spoon in no time.

At about the age of two, your child will be capable of moving on to forks. Begin with foods that are easy to pierce, like cubes of cheese or nuggets. Although they may fail at first, try and try again. Soon, your child will be forking it in without a problem.

fork spoon

To give your child the best chance of success with the fork or spoon, get something safe and easy for the child to use. The Ergofork and Spoon are great for making eating fun and simple for beginners because of their easy to hold angle handles and curved tips to keep food from spilling. They’re also made from durable, newly formulated FDA approved biodegradable plastic and are top rack dishwasher safe.

 

Best Baby Plates and Bowls

If you’ve seen your child eat, you probably already know that feeding it from your best china is not the greatest idea. Plastic is the way to go in order to keep broken dishes down to a minimum, but those plastics have to be safe.

ani bowls penguin

At SOOJIN, safety is our middle name and that’s why our baby bowl will bowl you over. Like our Ergoforks and spoons, the Anibowl is made of completely biodegradable materials and BPA, phalates, and PVCs. You'll love Anibowls because they’re top rack dishwasher safe, and your baby will love them for the little animal faces on the front that make sure he or she always has company for a meal.

When looking for the best baby plates, compartments are a pro. They keep the carrots from sliding into the potatoes and the potatoes from sliding on to the baby’s lap.  The dipPLATES makes ingenious use of compartments.

dip PLATE Piglet Blue

Each diPLATE is shaped like your child’s favorite animals, divided into sections to keep the foods separated. Also, biodegradable and chemical free, the dipPLATE will keep the pudding from the meat and the dip from the chip.

 

Best Baby Cups

After having gone through the drama of weaning your baby off the bottle, it may be tempting to let it drink from a sippy cup until it reaches adulthood. Doctors recommend that children quit the sippy cup at age two, but in reality, that’s not likely to happen.

Children may not the most coordinated individuals but drinking from a spout can lead to oral and health issues, so in time, your child is going to have to bid the sippy cup farewell, and at SOOJIN, we know that breaking up with the sippy cup can be hard to do.

CUPPIES Piglet milk

That’s why we recommend Cuppies. Each Cuppie has a little (biodegradable) plastic animal figurine attached to the bottom, so children will want not only to drink but to drink to the last drop. At SOOJIN, we think that blows the lid off of any sippy cup.

 

Best Baby Bibs

Before your child graduates to self-feeding there are a lot of spills, two-fisted eating, and near misses to be anticipated. The bib is the child's first defense against untidiness and although you will probably go through several, not all bibs are alike.

organic baby bibs

The best baby bibs are the ones that don’t irritate your babies skin and are easy to wash. The Drybib is made of 100% soft organic cotton and free of BPAs, phthalate, and PVC. They're also machine washable and waterproof for quick and easy cleanup.

siliMATs

Another way to safeguard against messes is to use a placemat. Silimats can be used on the go to protect kids from germs on public surfaces and to protect private surfaces from food splatter. Made of silicone, so they will not corrode or deteriorate or support the growth of fungus or bacteria, these adorable, odorless mats are a must-have for all children who are learning to eat by themselves.

If you’re a mom or dad teaching your child to eat, you’re in for a messy ride, but you can do damage control by choosing the best baby plates and bowls, types of baby bibs, and easy to use forks and spoons. Start with these, and your child will be the coolest kid in the cafeteria in no time.

 

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