To not expect my 13 month old to feed himself?

(39 Posts)
Dietagainmonday Sat 05-Apr-14 08:25:43

My ds attends nursery twice a week. He is now in the group 1-2 year olds and is now expected to feed himself. I've always encouraged him and he usually grabs the spoon off me but I try to make sure he has a decent portion before he takes the spoon and gets dinner all over his face, hair, the walls floor. Have I babied him to much or is the nursery having to high expectations? he is the youngest in this group at the moment. Yesterday they had beef dinner for lunch and chicken curry for dinner and was told he ate it all but this morning I gave him Weetabix he managed about two spoonfuls with difficulty then the rest went on the floor. He's fine with finger food but not great with a spoon.

Waltonswatcher1 Sat 05-Apr-14 08:33:59

Read the Baby Led Weaning book - Jill ripely I think .
It will help you chill I think .
Briefly though , you can help him out but perhaps he should be encouraged to be independent .

BobPatSamandIgglePiggle Sat 05-Apr-14 08:36:03

13 months? He's still a baby. They should be helping him as much as he needs

jendot Sat 05-Apr-14 08:37:06

I was letting both my ds feed themselves independently by 13months... But I started the process at weaning at 6mnths so by 13mnths they had pretty much got the hang of eating (wether by spoon or hands!) if you have always spoon fed the expecting him to feed by himself with no practice is unreasonable. You should maybe give him a spoon at every meal and have a go by himself, maybe keeping some of it aside to spoon feed when he has chucked all his on the poor to top up. Also worth checking what consistency the nursery are feeding him? Maybe his ood is not so mashed there so easier to feed to himself?

NobodyLivesHere Sat 05-Apr-14 08:38:56

At 13months I'd be expecting mine to give feeding themselves a good go.

Paintingrainbowskies Sat 05-Apr-14 08:40:06

Feeding themselves doesn't necessarily mean that they would have to eat it all with the spoon, perhaps he's using his hands to eat most at nursery?

MsVestibule Sat 05-Apr-14 08:45:02

IME, (but only 2 babies, so hardly a statistically relevant study) 13 months is really early to be properly feeding themselves. I think mine were about 18 months when they fed themselves. I'm not sure I'd even given them the spoon to hold by that age.

I would ask them to feed her (although I know it can be difficult to 'challenge' nursery practices) and continue to give her the spoon at home. Is it too early to give her a crayon and paper to help develop her coordination? Not suggesting there's anything wrong with her coordination ATM, though!!!

yellowsnownoteatwillyou Sat 05-Apr-14 08:51:10

I wouldn't expect a 13 month old to use cutlery to eat and entire meal, would be mostly eating with hands and spoon waving I would think. My 8 month old eats everything with his hands and will clamp his mouth shut if you try and put a spoon in.

AMillionNameChangesLater Sat 05-Apr-14 08:53:14

Ds1 uses cutlery now to feed himself, but he didn't until he was about 20 months. Just wasn't interested. Even now if he loves what he's eating he gets excited and uses his hands. He's 2.6.

Waltonswatcher1 Sat 05-Apr-14 08:55:28

But they are all different !
My 6mth old used a spoon cleanly , she watched our older kids . The point is it doesn't matter as long as the food goes in . I don't care about how it gets there , she now uses a spoon , fork and fingers . I just try to relax and enjoy it .
With my first I was a pain in the ass mum - wiping her face between mouthfuls and stressing over homemade meals left untouched .

HowContraryMary Sat 05-Apr-14 08:58:50

My eldest at 13/14 months could use a spoon and fork properly.

splasheeny Sat 05-Apr-14 08:59:12

My dd was feeding herself from 6 months, its called baby led weaning and is great for their development.
I have a great photo of her feeding herself porridge with a spoon at the same age, making a huge mess but having a great time.

Yes they do make a mess but if it is at nursery then nursery will clean it up!

gemdrop84 Sat 05-Apr-14 09:02:37

Our ds is 14 months, I usually spoonfeed him cereal or yogurt anything else is put on a plate in front of him so he can use his fingers and feed himself. He is starting to grab the spoon off me if we use it so I let him have a go.

ICanSeeTheSun Sat 05-Apr-14 09:03:01

was told he ate it all

Do you think the nursery was lying to you.

Both my DC still needed feeding at that age, but all children are diffrent

maddening Sat 05-Apr-14 09:07:50

It is good for development imo and part of the idea of self feeding is that they learn to stop when they're full where it's easier to over fill if you are being fed apparently.

maddening Sat 05-Apr-14 09:09:34

Ps later on you can encourage them to put their food on to their plate from a central dish and they learn portion control and to take what they need.

DinoSnores Sat 05-Apr-14 09:11:59

I've never spoon fed my children and they really do manage to get plenty in. DS is fine with cutlery now but 13mo DD really just uses her hands.

ChunkyPickle Sat 05-Apr-14 09:13:25

They are all different.

At 13 months DS1 could have happily fed himself stuff he could hold in his hand, but was awful with sloppy stuff. By 18 months he was pretty good with forks and spoons though, and would get most of it in.

DS2 is already better at feeding himself at 6 months than DS1 was at 12 months. He's already so good at getting the right end of a spoon in his mouth that I think he'll be self-sufficient by 13 months.

It's all very well saying let them make a mess, I'm fine with mess, but DS1 was so frustrated that he wasn't getting any of whatever he was trying to get in his mouth that it seemed like a cruel torture not to help out!

mygrandchildrenrock Sat 05-Apr-14 09:14:24

I expect Nursery will give her a bigger portion than if she was being fed, to allow for the mess on her, the table etc. That's what they usually do. Full babies are happier babies and nursery will not want her to be hungry. I'm sure they will help her too, as well as encourage her to use her fingers and spoon. Try not to worry, but talk to staff and see what they say about how she feeds herself.

StormyBrid Sat 05-Apr-14 09:15:07

Mine's almost 13 months, and I consider a meal a success if she eats at least two mouthfuls with her hands! Spoons are just for chewing. If you're worried, let him start a meal trying to feed himself (so he's hungry for it) and then help out. They're all different though - I know another 13m old who was blw from six months and will now only eat beige food, so don't beat yourself up for feeding him whatever way works for you. He'll get the hang of feeding himself with a spoon eventually.

Joysmum Sat 05-Apr-14 09:22:14

I believe in giving babies the opportunities to try to do more for themselves early on. When my DD was weaned, as soon as she became interested in reaching for the spoon she got her own too.

Many of my friends took the line of least resistance and did things for their children because it was quicker and easier for them. I certainly found it harder initially to allow the freedoms but it soon paid off as my DD generally liked to imitate adults and been more independent earlier.

What I've never done is to measure her achievements against others, just concentrated on trying to promote the will to try.

Jinty64 Sat 05-Apr-14 09:26:26

None of mine fed themselves at that age because they were still babies. Now they have to be "school ready" by 2 things might have changed.

MiaowTheCat Sat 05-Apr-14 10:14:20

My 12 month old would eat things easily picked up with her fingers (pasta and the like) fairly consistently a couple of months ago. Her sister's about to turn 2 and it's only recently that spoons have clicked at all - although she could cope with yoghurt and stuff that stuck tot he spoon earlier.

jellyandcake Sat 05-Apr-14 10:26:41

My ds was using a spoon at 7m though he did seem to think yoghurt was best eaten with his fingers. They all do things at different ages though eg he didn't walk til 17 months so I don't think you can be prescriptive and say 'they should all do x by this age' or 'they can't do x until they are that age'.

What I don't understand though is this idea of a 'decent portion'. Mine has always eaten such variable amounts at mealtimes that I never knew what constituted a decent portion. He is 3 now and sometimes will have literally two mouthfuls of dinner, other times a plateful. I think they are generally fairly good at regulating their own appetites, but again that may just be my experience.

OneUp Sat 05-Apr-14 11:19:27

My LO was pretty good at eating with a spoon at 13 months. She'd been using a spoon since about 8 months though.

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